Beat the heat with wine 7-12-2023

If you live in the southern part of the USA, summer 2023 has been a horror. Record-breaking high temperatures, the sort of records no sane person wants to brag about.

There is a wine solution, especially if you want to have an outdoor family event around pool, patio, porch, picnic, dock, backyard. Or inside with the AC cranked up, for that matter.

Sangria punch. Chilled, low-alcohol sangria is wonderful hot summer wine play.

You can make sangria with almost any wine. Cheaper works since the wine is just part of an ensemble cast, but avoid total plonk. Spend low two digits. Avoid wines labeled “sangria.” This is usually inferior wine with artificial flavorings. You are much better served using real ingredients. Recipe below is a suggestion. Making it your own is encouraged.

TorQue Astur photo

Multiply ingredients to suite your party’s size. Figure four people per 750 ml bottle of wine. Estimate on high side; even non-wine drinkers will enjoy this, and it is inexpensive enough you will not lament if you throw some away. It also can be put in the refrigerator and enjoyed the next day.

• 750 ml of wine (or more, depending on the throng—same with all the ingredients that follow)
• 1 lemon, 1 orange, 1 lime, 1 red apple. Cut into thin wedges. Do not peel or squeeze to make juice
• 2 tbsp sugar
• 1 cup pulpy orange juice
• 1 cup lemonade
• 1 can (20 oz) of diced pineapple (include the juice)
• 3 shots triple sec or Grand Marnier
• 1 cup raspberries or strawberries (fresh, thawed, or frozen)
• 4 cups chilled ginger ale

Pour some ingredients into pitcher: Wine, lemon, orange, lime, apple slices, pineapple, sugar, orange juice, lemonade, triple sec/Grand Marnier. Chill overnight in your fridge—this is important, best sangrias marinate at least 12 hours.

Add ginger ale, whole berries before serving. Serve with ladle so people can get some fruit to eat. Serve straight or over ice.

If you are adverse to the work and prep of a quality sangria punch, you can always go with wine out of the bottle. Put the bottle in you refrigerator, that will lower the temperature to the low 40s, usually too cool for best appreciation, but in summer toss out some rules.

White wines are the best suited for this, but light reds can work. To balance everything out, drink a glass of chilled water with each glass of wine.

Last round: You know it is a hot summer when your electric bill is more than your house payment. Wine time.