In honor of the impending holiday weekend, and in honor of my abundant hydroponic herb stash, today I share with you something that will rock your socks off. Because who needs socks after Memorial Day? Afterall, it’s summertime!
Has a particular version of food or drink ever “ruined” you for its lesser alternatives? As in, you avoid other alternatives all together because they cannot hardly compare to the real deal? I find this happens to us more and more frequently as we wind our way through our culinary lives. A friend’s butterscotch bars have me turning down any store-bought or potluck version… I won’t order tiramisu unless it’s made-to-order like one of my favorite local restaurant’s.. things like this. Am I alone here? (“Where is she going with this??” .. I hear you..)
A few summers ago we spent some time (er… quite a bit of time, actually) in San Francisco. Therein, we met a couple who could whip up the meanest, fruitiest and most potent red sangria known to touch my lips. Mmm. It is one of those food/drink-linked memories that has you wishing for a time machine. Theirs is a recipe that I can’t hope to replicate so I do not even attempt… in an effort to savor my memory of its perfection! That sangria was red.. so creating a white version remained a viable option without marring the memory of this super-special San Francisco Sangria. Some friends and I were gathering and the weather has recently turned our version of Wisconsin-tropical, so I whipped up this raspberry mint version of white sangria.
Mint is often paired with strawberries, lemon or other citrus fruits but I find it goes quite well with raspberries. Using a decent Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio white wine to start with will ensure that crisp, clean taste and per usual at BFS, we try to shoot for organic and/or local fruits and herbs. Lastly, serving in a clear pitcher or even large glass canning jars will ensure that your guests can appreciate the beauty of the bright berries and green mint sprigs. I won’t go as far as to say that a pitcher of this sangria is a centerpiece on it’s own, but it is off to a good start!
This recipe doubles (and triples) well and unlike some sangria recipes that involve a long “marinade,” an hour or two will suffice so long as you remember to encourage the process by rubbing the mint leaves between your fingers a bit to release the flavors before adding it to the mix.
One disclaimer – be sure to label it appropriately. People may assume that it is flavored water! If you happen to find yourself pregnant during the summer like I was last year (or under the legal age to drink.. or acting as designated driver), try out last summer’s BFS signature drink: the Basil-Infused Strawberry Lemonade. One might argue that they mirror one another a bit in appearance .. another great reason to label those pitchers!
- 750ml (1 bottle) white wine – Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio
- 1/2 cup raspberry liqueur
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 pint fresh raspberries, rinsed
- 4-5 sprigs of fresh mint, rinsed
- Ice, for serving
1. In 2-quart pitcher, combine wine, liqueur and sugar. Stir until sugar is dissolved.
2. Roll mint leaves between your fingers or muddle in mortar in pestle a bit to release aroma. Add to pitcher. Stir in berries. Admire the colors.
3. Cover and chill 1-4 hours.
4. Serve sangria over ice, with additional berries for garnish if desired. Cheers!
Last year at this time, we whipped up this Twenty-Minute Portobello Parmesan
Enjoy, and have a wonderful long weekend!