Sangria is a summer classic, but cava sangria is that bit more special. Light, refreshing and a wonderful mix of fruit and cava's bubbles. Quick to make, it's an easy cocktail perfect for any occasion from summer BBQs to holiday parties.
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When I lived in Spain, I didn't actually have sangria all that often. More typically, we drank wine (usually red) or beer, plus some cocktails in Madrid. Most special occasions, and sometimes just any old excuse to get together, meant cracking open some cava.
Now and again, though, we would enjoy a pitcher of sangria. And one of the times I remember most was when we had cava sangria.
The town I lived in in Catalunya wasn't that big and when I was there, it always seemed to play second fiddle to another town on the coast nearby.
It didn't have as many options for going out although we did find some good food, with favorites like patatas bravas, llescas (Catalan bread pizza), coca (Spanish pizza) and others, but the venues weren't exactly trendy.
But that started to change (and has much more now, as I found when I returned a few years back). It was in one of the newer trendy places that I first had cava sangria and I was immediately taken with it.
I had already grown to love cava which I find massively under-appreciated outside of Spain. Champagne gets the glory but I find some cavas have a much rounder flavor that I personally prefer. But then I maybe shouldn't promote it too much as it's quite nice being a lot cheaper.
Anyway, I was a bit worried this would ruin it for me. But the thing to remember about sangria is it's really a different drink. Yes, it's mainly wine - in this case sparkling - but it's transformed with the fruity additions and little kick from a spirit of two.
How to make the perfect cava sangria
With a regular sangria (and my white sangria), you are often best to leave it to chill and for the flavors to mingle a bit before serving. Cava sangria is different. At most you mix up the fruit, juice and spirits but you don't want to add the cava until right before serving so you don't lose the bubbles. Otherwise, though, it's very similar:
- Mix some orange juice, a little lemon and an orange liqueur (grand marnier, triple sec etc).
- Add brandy, if you like, but it's up to you if you want it stronger or not.
- Add chopped fruit and mix it up.
- Carefully add the cava and serve over ice.
Cava sangria has a lovely slight bubbliness, plenty of fruity flavors and is a lovely light drink. But don't be fooled, there's a bit of a lingering kick, too. It's the perfect drink for a party, or even just a lazy summer afternoon when you feel like something different. Whatever the excuse, find one and give this easy drink a try.
Looking for more cooling cocktail ideas? Try these!
- Pimm's cup cocktail
- Raspberry collins cocktail
- Frozen pineapple daiquiri
- Grilled peach mojito
- Plus get more ideas in the cocktail recipes archives.
- 1 cup orange juice 240ml
- ½ lemon juice (ie juice from ½ lemon)
- ¼ cup triple sec/grand marnier or other orange liqueur 60ml
- ¼ cup brandy 60ml, optional
- 2 peaches
- 1 orange
- 1 cup sliced strawberries 160g
- 750 ml cava (ie 1 bottle)
- 1 tablespoon sugar optional, or a little more to taste
- Mix together the orange juice, lemon juice, orange liqueur and brandy, if using, in a glass pitcher/jug. Slice the peaches, orange and strawberries and add them to the pitcher. Put in fridge to chill if not using immediately.
- Carefully add the cava to the pitcher, trying to avoid it bubbling up too much, mix gently and add a little sugar to taste if you like (1-2tbsp at most). Add some ice and serve, with a little more ice in the glasses.
Try these other easy summer drinks:
- Blackberry Gin Mule by A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures
- Boozy Rootbeer Float 2 Ways by My Life Cookbook
- Frozen Banana Daiquiri by Restless Chipotle
- Spiked Arnold Palmer Cocktails by Hardly A Goddess
- Blackberry Mojitos by The Chef Next Door
- Fresh Cherry Margaritas by The Crumby Kitchen
- Prickly Pear Margarita by Palatable Pastime
- Strawberry Sunset Lemon Drop by Soulfully Made
- Pink Lemonade Sangria by Baking Sense
- Sparkling Chambord Sangria by Books n’ Cooks
- Watermelon Sangria by A Mind Full Mom