Truth: Spaniards don’t really drink that much sangria. They tend instead to drink tinto de verano, which is just red wine mixed with sparkling lemonade. Sangria, while delicious, is kind of for special occasions and tourists: it takes a while to make, it’s more expensive, and it’s more labor-intensive.
That said, it’s also worth the extra effort if you’re in the mood for a cold glass of delicious summer wine. Go easy on this stuff, though: it goes down a little too easy, but all the sweetness makes for a killer morning headache if you’re not careful.
When buying wine for sangria, go for lower-quality bottles: a magnum of Charles Shaw cabernet sauvignon will do you just fine for sangria purposes, and you don’t want to waste the flavors of a high-quality bottle of red by splashing a bunch of fruit and brandy in it.
This article was originally published on August 15, 2014.