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By: Eleni Gray
Labor Day is the time to relax, before the bustling energy of the fall begins to nip at our heels...
I love, and I mean, love, making a drink that goes down perfectly. Maybe it was the four years of college drinking (sticky red cups with whatever liquor and mixers available) that has made me physically incapable of just drinking. I really have to enjoy whatever I’m sipping. I mean seriously, four years of going to the same bar every Thursday night that served you the same overly-sugary whiskey sour while the stench of drunken body heat aggressively lingered has made my tolerance for the crappy mixed drink about zero. With that said, I’m not a snob… I’ll tip back the cheapest beers I can get my hands on (Budweiser and Miller Lite especially). But when it comes to wines and cocktails, I just happen to be a bit pickier.
I worked as a bartender for a while back in college. The most exciting part was discovering how to drink happily and enjoying drinking.
Now that I’ve given my spiel on why you should be drinking something YOU enjoy…I’ll share one of my favorite recipes for Watermelon Sangria from Maggie Hoffman.
Let me start off by saying, watermelon is a great mixer—especially for the summer. People underestimate its capability as an alcohol companion, but when blended its actually able to give the perfect amount of sweetness without being sugary or overt. It’s one of my favorite flavors during the summer... I go at it like this kid:
This recipe is easy as pie, and will have your Labor Day party shouting “More!”
I’m going to give you the recipe to make a pitcher of the drink. If you’d like only about 4 servings, just split the recipe in half. We have all the liquor ingredients in store which is a plus!
8 cups cubed seedless watermelon
3 cups white wine (I would recommend a Pinot Gris like our Torii Mor from Oregon)
2oz añejo rum
4oz Cointreau liqueur
3oz simple syrup (this is preference based, I like my drinks less sweet) Maggie recommends 4oz... it just depends on your taste.
Start by blending the watermelon in a blender. Strain it over a pitcher; use the juice from straining for the sangria. Add all the other ingredients to the pitcher except for the lime. Stir really well! After you’re done stirring, take two limes’ juice and add it to the pitcher. If you’d like, take the other two limes, slice them and put them in the pitcher. No need to juice the last two limes, though. Refrigerate for about 2 hours minimum. Pour over ice. Add mint as a garnish if desired. Voila!
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