Beat the heat with a pitcher of Sangria!

Ole! Cool down with a pitcher of Sangria this summer.  This Spanish favorite summer drink are typically made with red wine, seasonal fruit with a splash of soda or sparkling wine (Spanish Cava is perfect) to give it a refreshing spritz. Did you know that Sangria was introduced to North America in the Spanish Pavilion at the 1964 New York’s World Fair.

Super easy to make, not to mention goes down easy too – Sangria can appeal to your friends who are not “into wine.”  You can use a variety of different wines in the recipe. Even use open bottles of wine that are sitting on your counter.

As seen on TV!

Watch me whipping up red & white wine sangria on CTV Ottawa Morning Live with host Kurt Stoodley – and you will find out my 2 secret ingredients!

Which types of wines to use?

Save your finest Bordeaux or wines that are deep in your cellar for a special occasion, when mixing up Sangria look for these grape varieties or styles of wine:

White Sangria

Pinot Gris
Muscato or Muscat
Off Dry Riesling
Prosecco (Italy) or Cava (Spain)
…or replace white wine with a Rosé wine – why not?

Red Sangria

Cabernet Sauvignon
Pinot Noir
Gamay Noir
Red wine blend

These wines are perfectly fine on their own.  I selected these grape varieties for their fruity & full bodied flavor profiles and bold style that would complement the added fruit.

Go Local!

Make this a All-Ontario summer drink by using Ontario wines, with locally grown fruit & finish off with a splash of Ottawa’s own Harvey & Vern’s Ginger Beer (available at Kichesippi Brewery or ask for it at your grocery stores).


Crowd Pleasing Classic Sangria

Serves: 6 to 8 people

Easy to sip on any day of the week, with brunch, lunch or unwinding after work. Refreshing red sangria is fruit-laden without too much alcohol!


1 bottle of red wine (see above for list of recommended red wines)
1 lemon – cut into slices – cut into halves
1 orange cut slices – cut into halves or quarters
1 lime cut into wedges or slices
1 can of Five Alive concentrate
2 splashes of gin or triple sec (optional)
1 cup of berries (raspberries, strawberries) –  fresh or frozen
2 cups of ginger ale  **make it local by using Harvey & Vern’s Ginger Beer
ice – for WOW factor, make a large ice cube with empty plastic containers & float fruit then freeze


Pour wine into one or two large pitchers.  Squeeze into the wine half of the sliced lemon, orange and lime. Once juiced, toss in the citrus fruit into pitcher.  Add remaining sliced fruit into mixture. Stir in Five Alive & Gin or triple sec if using. The best Sangrias are chilled overnight (or more) in the fridge to allow the flavors to mellow (and seep the fruit too!).

If you’d like to serve right away, use chilled red wine and serve over lots of ice.

Just before serving, add in ginger ale, berries and ice. Enjoy!

Photo credit: LyndseyLew Photography

A Wow-Pow White Sangria

Serves: 6 to 8 people


1 bottle of white wine (see above for list of recommended white wines)
2 oranges – thinly sliced & cut in half
1 lemon – cut into slices – cut into halves
1 lime cut into wedges or slices
1 small tin of mandarins – with juice
2 oz. Brandy (optional)
1 can of Five Alive concentrate or orange juice
2 cups of ginger ale (our pick Harvey & Vern’s Ginger Beer), club soda or sparkling wine (Cava from Spain or Prosecco from Italy)
More fruit – sliced strawberries, star fruit, peaches, nectarines, handful of fresh blueberries, a kiwi


Pour white wine into a decorative pitcher.  Squeeze into the wine, the juice wedges from the orange, lemon and lime into the wine. Toss in the fruit wedges – leaving out seeds . Add brandy if desired.

Chill overnight. Just before serving, add ginger ale, club soda or sparkling wine to the pitchers.

If you’d like to serve right away, use chilled white wine and serve over lots of ice.

Photo credit: LyndseyLew Photography

Here’s to the lazy hazy days of summer!

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