Wine Questionary:

Sangria, how to make it

Any self-respecting wine snob would sooner quaff Night Train Express than mix fruit juice or sparkling water into his wine. But I don't see any wine snobs around here, and there certainly are none in Spain, where folks take their wine anything but seriously and have absolutely no qualms about turning their vino into the immensely quaffable sangrķa.

Sangrķa makes a tasty quencher for a lazy, hazy summer afternoon, but there's no need to limit it to sweat season. There's still plenty of sangrķa-sipping weather left before mulled-wine time. And it's easy to prepare.

In a punch bowl or similar vessel, pour one standard (750 ml) bottle of dry red wine and an equal amount (more or less, to taste) of club soda, seltzer or sparkling water. Add a generous amount of thin-sliced citrus fruit -- limes, lemons, oranges or a combination. You're adding peel as well, so be sure to rinse it well. If you want to give it a little zing, add a shot of brandy or an orange-flavored liqueur like Grand Marnier. Some folks like a little sugar for sweetening. If you're in the mood, you can even make it with white wine and substitute kiwis (peeled), strawberries and table grapes for the citrus. Sangrķa is a forgiving punch -- it doesn't care if you change the rules in the middle of the bowl.

The wine you use to make sangrķa should be palatable, of course, but it's silly to waste expensive wine on this kind of drink. \r\n

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