Sangria in the Summer

A big party with lots of friends from the neighborhood is the perfect time to break out some sangria. Not too stuffy or serious. Enough fruit to keep the white zin crowd (and the vegans) happy. And visual appeal out the wazzoo. Don’t believe me? Check it:

This is a batch of white sangria jazzed up with vanilla seeds, some white cranberry/peach juice from the fine folks at Ocean Spray, and a secret ingredient – Dolin Blanc vermouth – which adds some really nice depth under the fruity sweetness. This was a bit improvised, but the idea for the the vanilla and white cranberry/peach combo came from an old Bon Apetit recipe. Here’s the Thirsty South version, perfect for peach season in the South:

White Sangria with Vanilla and Peach

1 bottle Riesling, preferably on the dry side
1 1/2 cups Ocean Spray white cranberry and peach
1/2 cup Dolin Blanc vermouth
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
2 fresh Georgia peaches, cut into wedges
1 lemon, sliced into rounds
1 orange, cut in half and sliced into rounds
a bunch of raspberries

Mix first 4 ingredients in a large pitcher. Scrape in seeds from vanilla bean; add bean and stir to blend. Add in peach and citrus. Cover and chill overnight. Add raspberries before serving, pour over ice.

Now, this batch of sangria went way too quickly, but there was plenty of sangria-infused fruit left in the pitcher. We happened to have a few bottles of Savida Sangria sitting around, and poured them into the pitcher to keep the party going. Savida is actually based in Atlanta, and they are among the best options out there if you’re looking for a ready-made sangria. They use good quality California wine and real fruit juice, and work well when you’re in a pinch for something quick. Salud!

Comments welcome, y'all!