Tag Archives: Grenache

Oh so delicious Sangria!

Sangria sometimes get a bad rap that is not always undeserving.  Like any cocktail, if it is made with pre-mixed ingredients, you will end up with a syrupy sweet concoction that just  doesn’t do this historical drink justice.  I always endorse the use of fresh, quality ingredients in any cocktail, but that’s because I spend too many years behind a bar making them both ways.  The drinks that always got a “Wow!” were the ones that made to order with fresh juices, fruit and  garnishes.

Sangria should be no different.  Yes, it had a humble beginning in Spain but it has grown world-wide to be a refreshing party drink.  For you Jane Austen fans out there, The Claret Cup Punch she wrote about is, in fact, a sangria.  Mrs. Bennet served it after her mischevious daughter Lydia ran off with Wickham to celebrate their marriage, despite the scandal it caused in Pride & Prejudice.  In addition, Mr. Weston served it at his Christmas party, you know, the one where Mr. Elton imbibed too much and revealed his true feelings for the heroine in Emma.  Nearly everyone of Miss Austen’s stories has a party scene in which sangria was served.  And as it should be, sangria is a drink meant to be shared with friends over a punch bowl at a summer party.

But I digress….

Although Sangria is traditionally a punch made from red wine, modern recipes have evolved that use white wine and roses as well.  Rioja has been the most popular base but increasingly we’ve seen on restaurant menus white, rose and sparkling.   So I have decided to share with you my personal recipes for crowd pleasing cocktails.  I know that some people like to add fizz to their sangria so feel free to add seltzer to any of these still wine recipes.

Red Sangria:

1 BIG punch bowl

1 bottle of red wine.  Doesn’t have to be expensive.  I suggest Grenache or Rioja

½ cup of Clement Creole Shrubb (Orange liqeuor…can substitute Grand Marnier or Cointreau)

½ cup of raspberry or citrus flavored rum-depends on how fruity you like it.

¼ cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/3 cup of freshly squeezed orange juice

1/3 cup freshly pureed raspberries

Soak overnight in the wine: sliced orange, lime, lemon, raspberries, blueberries, apples and red grapes (halved).  Then mix the rest the ingredients in before serving.  Garnish with a slice of orange and a raspberry skewered.

White Sangria: 

**This recipe also goes great with a sparkling wine like a Cava Brut or Prosecco.

1 BIG punch bowl

1 bottle of white wine.  I like Vinho Verde for the crisp flavors it adds.

½ cup of pear brandy

½ cup of peach flavored rum

¼ cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/3 cup    of freshly squeezed orange juice

1/3 cup freshly pureed peaches (for something more tropical use mangoes instead)

Soak overnight in the wine: sliced orange, lime, lemon, peach, apple, red and green grapes (halved).  Mix the rest of the ingredients in before serving.  Garnish with a slice of peach and a raspberry skewered.

Rose Sangria:

1 BIG punch bowl

1 bottle of rose.  Something dry and crisp like a rose from Provence.

½ cup of red berry flavored rum

½ cup of fruit liqueur.  I like Thatcher’s Blueberry or Yumberry

¼ cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/3 cup    of freshly squeezed orange juice

1/3 Cup of freshly pureed strawberries

Soak overnight in the wine: sliced orange, lime, lemon, strawberries (halved), red and green grapes (halved).  Mix the rest of the ingredients in before serving.  Garnish with a slice of strawberry.  Add basil for a delicious kick!

I know these recipes may seem like a lot of work but trust me, the end result is worth the effort.  Get your friends slicing up the fruit and you have got yourself a pre-party!

Happy Sangria making everyone!

Bonding and the Wine Spectator Grand Tour

Sue, Howie and John

Sometimes it is just necessary to hang out with the co-workers outside of the office and last Thursday night that meant that a trip to the Marriot Copley Hotel for the Wine Spectator Grand Tour.  For someone like me, who is new to the Bauer team, I was able to get to know Sue, Howie and John on a different level than I had in the store.  I learned more about who they were as individuals (and no-I am not going to divulge any of their secrets to you!) and how they came to be the great people they are.   It was nice talking to them on a more personal level, rather than discussing store events, inventory and sales.  I definitely feel more bonded to them and, consequently, to Bauer as well.  Although we did discuss the store to some degree, we mainly sipped and slurped our way through the 216 wines that were offered, laughing and joking along the way.

Sue and I bee-lined for Chateau Margeaux and Mouton Rothschild first.  Legendary wines such as those needed my attention first as I have never had the chance to taste them before.  Once we linked up with Howie and John, the four of us tasted Barolos, big California reds, Super Tuscans, Bordeauxs and more.  Once our lips were stained red, we slid over to the white wines.  Sauvignon Blancs and Viogniers delighted me.  St. Urbans-Hof Weingut’s Spatlese earned a huge star…especially considering Nik Weiss was coming to Bauer the following day to have a tasting with us.  BUT the big star of the night as far as I was concerned was the 1995 Femme Champagne from the Deval-Leroy winery.  This was what Champagne was meant to taste like.  Great acidity, complex, citrus-y with hints of marzipan and a yeasty biscuit flavor.  This one stole the show from the big Bordeauxs.

At the end of this wonderful evening with my crew, I realized that most of you probably don’t know who I am because  I am usually found in the office chained to the computer.  If you visit our website site, I am the one who makes sure our products are current (and in process of a redesign that is more user friendly).  You may have seen me in the store though, usually walking back and forth between the office and the counter with papers in my hand.   I may have even rung up your purchases with smile.  So perhaps it is time for me to formally introduce myself to you all.  My name is Corinne and I

John and me-one of the few times you will see me on the other side of the camera.

am the Marketing Director.  Hi.  I came to Bauer about six weeks ago to take over their social media writing.  So anytime you read our blog, get an email, visit Facebook or receive a Tweet, it is coming from me.  It has certainly kept me busy and I love it.  Most of my friends tell me I have the greatest job in the world;  I can’t disagree.  I taste and write about wine, beer and spirits for an amazing company.

2 hours with European Cellars

Now that we all have made it through another St. Patrick’s Day in Boston it is time to put away the green beer and shamrock sunglasses. To celebrate the end of another fun-filled day of debauchery, we tasted Old World Wines from France and Spain courtesy of Eric Solomon Selections.

Every Saturday, Bauer Wine & Spirits holds a wine tasting starting at 4:30 pm and last week’s offering was nothing short of spectacular. Eric Solomon offered up six wines for our public to savor and they are now available on our website (www.bauerwines.com) and in-store to purchase as a sampler case. So if you missed the wine tasting, you can still enjoy these European Cellars vintages at home.

To warm up our palettes, we started with a 2010 Chateau Pesquie Terrasses Rose from the Cotes du Ventoux of France. I know, I know, when someone mentions rose most of us picture a bottle of white zinfandel but that couldn’t be further from the truth.  This delightful aperitif was fresh and well-balanced. Altered to please an American palette, the aromas of strawberry and watermelon balanced out the dry finish.  Pair this with a Bouillabaisse,  chicken Cacciatore, or most seafood dishes and you will find why we at Bauer are excited about this newcomer to our store.

From there we moved to a 2009 Vila Viniteca el Perro Verde from Rueda, Spain. Pale gold in color, I was delighted with the ripe citrus flavors, mango, fresh pineapple, and hints of ginger. The balance of tropical and citrus fruits with mineral and herbs tantalize the taste buds.  Goes great with simple pasta dishes such a fettuccine with butter and Parmesan cheese.

Staying in Spain, we next tasted a 2009 Gramona Gessami from Penedes. More complex than the previous white, this blend of Muscat, Sauvignon Blanc and Gewurtztraminer had flavors of zesty lemon peel, mineral notes and nice finish.  This wine would be a great match to any Asian cuisine.

Delving into the reds, first came the 2009 La Cova dels Vins Ombra from Montsant, Spain. This lively red packs a punch with aromas of black raspberry, minerals, flowers, camphor and spicy oak. The flavors of red berry preserves, herbs and mocha are balanced well with delicate tannins, making it perfect to pair with beef teriyaki, baked ham or pork tenderloin.

Heather then poured the 2008 Chateau Saint-Roch Chimeres from the Cotes du Roussillon, France. A blend of black grenache, syrah, carigan and mourvedre that had rich flavors of dark plum, meat, savory herbs and mineral notes. This versatile, medium bodied red would match well with meaty dishes.

The last wine of the night was the 2009 Casa Castillo Monastrell from Jumilla, Spain. Right off the bat you could taste the dark, wild berry flavors, spicy strawberry with white pepper and rose. Light tannins gave this wine a nicely focused finish.  Go get yourself some spicy Indian food or barbecue to have with it!

A great, big thanks to Heather from MS Walker for coming in and talking to all of us about these wines. Now that my tastes buds are revved up it is time to buy myself a bottle and enjoy. What’s coming home with me? The 2009 La Cova dels Vins Ombra.