Saturday, August 15, 2009

From the Kitchen: Dominick-Inspired Sangria

I live just south of Ann Arbor and the University of Michigan. I grew up around here, went away for college, then moved back to get married and make babies, among many other, less notable things. Ann Arbor is home to Dominick's, a classic collegiate establishment that offers a mean sangria along side its menu of more solid and less noteworthy accompaniments. The sangria, served over ice in a mason jar, as Nature intended, is to be consumed in the open air of a patio with friends and good conversation. It's an experience unto itself, and one that I have long wondered how to create in a more domestic environment.


A good friend tipped me off to a fair imitation recipe on another blog, so I looked it up and just made my first humungous batch. After imbibing a meager 4 ounces, I am happily typing away with clumsy fingers that attest to its efficacy on an empty stomach. I am also realizing that I should have done the research part of this post prior to beginning the taste-testing part, because my mind is going numb faster than I anticipated. Moderation, dear friends, is key to avoiding the dreaded sangria-hangover... a feeling purported to be quite regrettable.

Sangria is a traditional Spanish drink involving red wine, brandy and fresh fruit. It is typically mixed and chilled overnight as an uncooked combination to let all the flavors intermingle. I made a syrup with the fruit for this recipe to cut the pulp factor, but you can make it in so many ways to whatever preferences you may have. There is also a white sangria version made with white wines and peaches or nectarines, if you prefer. Dominick's serves another drink called Constant Buzz which I suspect is a version of Sangria Blanco, but haven't looked for that recipe yet.

You can check the original posted version, but this is the method I used to make sangria with what I had around and to my anti-pulp preferences... it was a success, if I may say so.

Ingredients:

1.89 L (2 qt) cranberry juice
2 cups sugar
Citrus fruit, cut up (I used one lime, two lemons and two oranges)
1 cup brandy (really cheap brandy is fine)
750 mL Manischewitz kosher wine, Concord Grape flavor
4.5 L red wine (anything you have around; if its dry wine, add more sugar)


Directions:

Mix the juice, sugar and cut fruit in a very large pot. This is the pot I used (on a very different day), so you can see just how big is ideal:


Bring mixture to a boil, stirring often to dissolve the sugar. Reduce heat. Simmer for about 45 minutes to reduce to a thicker syrup (maybe to around 2 L volume). Remove from heat. Strain the mixture to remove rinds and pulp (feel free to leave it in if you enjoy eating your beverage). Cool. In your giant pot, pour in all remaining ingredients and the cooled syrup and stir well. Put it back in the wine bottles and refrigerate, or call up every friend you have to drink it if you don't have room. Serve over ice... Enjoy!

3 comments:

. Phydeaux . Phydelle . said...

I looove Sangria - will have to try this one day! That's a BIG pot, btw! :)

Jesse Ray said...

So after the hearty chuckles, and the affirming comments about your extensive vocabulary (Anna and I would have had a thesaurus handy if we had written your post), I must say that I am in the mood for Sangria. Yummy.

Building a home said...

Yum! I will definitely try this one! Thank you for sharing your recipe. Have a nice day!