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On tap: Sangria beats the heat, and barkeeping chores

It may be getting hot during the day, but cooler temperatures at night still make this a good time to entertain. Most people are more comfortable mingling with a drink in hand, but it’s hard to be a good host if you’re stuck in the kitchen mixing drinks all night.

Rather than play bartender, keep a supply of drinks on hand by serving sangria. The Spanish drink is a combination of fruit, liquor and wine, and a cup or two is guaranteed to keep conversation flowing. Prepare it in advance, set it out in batches and have time to enjoy the fruits of your labor.

A few restaurants around the Old Pueblo offer sangria. Here are is a representation of sangria-serving restaurants in different parts of town:

CASA VICENTE: 375 S. Stone Ave., 884-5253

Hours: Mon-Wed 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m., Wed-Fri 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 5:30-10 p.m., Sat 5:30-10 p.m., though closing time varies, depending on business)

Details: Red, pink or white sangria by the glass, carafe or pitcher

EL CORRAL RESTAURANT, 2201 E. River Road, 299-6092

Hours: Mon-Thu 5-10 p.m. (Fri-Sun open at 4:30 p.m.)

Details: Available by the glass, half pitcher or pitcher

EL CHARRO CAFE, 311 N. Court Ave., 622-1922

Hours: Sun-Thu 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m. -10 p.m.

Details: This Tucson landmark offers red sangria by the glass at all its locations.

VENTANA ROOM, (at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort) 7000 N. Resort Drive, 615-5495

Hours: Tue-Thu 6-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 6-10 p.m.

Details: A seasonal beverage – and this is the season.

FLYING V BAR & GRILL, (at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort) 7000 N. Resort Drive, 615-5495

Hours: Mon-Thu 5-9 p.m., Fri-Sat noon-10 p.m. (Sun until 9 p.m.)

Details: Buy it by the glass or the pitcher – made to order.

EVANGELO’S, 4405 W. Speedway Blvd., 792-3055

Hours: 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5-9:30 p.m. daily

Details: Served by the glass or the pitcher.

MI NIDITO, 1813 S. Fourth Ave., 622-5081

Hours: Wed, Thu & Sun 11 a.m.-10:30 p.m., Fri & Sat 11 a.m.-2 a.m.

Details: “The Little Nest’s” red sangria was one of the few things President Clinton didn’t sample during his 1999 visit. Served by the glass.

GUADALAJARA GRILL, 1730 E. Prince Road, 323-1022

Hours: Sun-Thu 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. (Fri & Sat until 10:30 p.m.)

Details: Enjoy our late spring temps with a pitcher or glass of red sangria on the patio.

LA FUENTE, 1749 N. Oracle Road, 623-8659

Hours: Sun-Thu 11 a.m.-10 p.m. (Fri & Sat until 11 p.m.)

Details: Open since 1960. Enjoy a glass or share a pitcher of your fruity beverage while you listen to the mariachis.

EL PARADOR RESTAURANT, 2744 E. Broadway, 881-2744

Hours: Mon-Thu 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (Fri & Sat until 10 p.m.), Sun 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m. & 4-9 p.m.

Details: Cool off between dances with a glass of red sangria.

EL MINUTO CAFE, 354 S. Main Ave., 882-4145

Hours: Sun-Thu 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri & Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.

Details: This landmark, open since 1945, serves red sangria by the glass.

BARRIO, 135 S. Sixth Ave., 629-0191

Hours: Mon 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (Tue-Thu until 10 p.m.), Fri 11 a.m.-midnight, Sat noon-midnight; Sun 5-9 p.m.

Details: Sip a glass of red sangria and be part of the downtown scene.

Source: Barcelona restaurant, Scottsdale Source: Epicurious.comSource: Good Housekeeping


Barcelona Sangria

2 bottles red wine

2 bottles white wine

8 ounces vodka

8 ounces orange vodka

8 ounces raspberry vodka

4 ounces brandy

4 ounces crème de cassis

1 pound total sliced strawberries, blueberries and oranges

Mix all ingredients in a container large enough to allow for stirring. Let sit in refrigerator for 24 hours to allow fruit to soften and absorb alcohol. Pour into pitcher and serve. Makes 1 gallon.


2 gallons zinfandel

1 cup brandy

1/2 cup Cointreau

2 quarts orange juice

2 cups lemon juice

1 cup superfine sugar

12 to 16 ice cubes

2 quarts chilled club soda

3 oranges, thinly sliced

3 lemons, thinly sliced

Thoroughly chill all ingredients. Pour the wine, brandy and Cointreau into a large punch bowl. Stir orange and lemon juice with the sugar until sugar has dissolved. Then add to bowl and stir to blend. Add ice cubes and soda and garnish with fruit slices. Serve in 4-ounce punch glasses or wine glasses. Makes about 100 servings.


Summer Sangria

with Tequila

1 pound seedless green grapes

1 pound strawberries, hulled

1 bottle red wine

1 cup tequila

1 cup grapefruit juice

1 cup cranberry juice cocktail

1 cup orange juice

1 cup blueberries

3/4 cup sugar

Ice cubes

Orange slices and mint sprigs for garnish

Remove grapes from stems and place in single layer in a 13-by-9-inch baking pan. Freeze at least two hours or overnight.

To hull strawberries, use your fingers to remove the green cap and then use a paring knife tip to scoop out the white middle.

In food processor with knife blade attached, purée strawberries. Pour strawberry purée into large pitcher or bowl. Add wine, tequila, grapefruit juice, cranberry juice, orange juice, blueberries and sugar, stirring well to dissolve sugar. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 2 hours or overnight.

To serve, pour sangria over ice in wine glasses. Add frozen grapes, garnish with orange slices and mint sprigs. Makes 12 cups.

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