Wine Cocktails!

Aug 18, 2023by Madi Lowry

by Madi Lowry

Mimosa mimosa cocktail watercolor art illustration" Greeting Card for Sale by  EmiGdesigns | Redbubble

The drink recipe was officially created in 1925 by a bartender, Frank Meier, at the Ritz Carlton in Paris. Years earlier, a very similar cocktail called the Buck’s Fizz was created in London using sparkling wine and orange juice. The Buck’s Fizz features a heavier pour of sparkling wine. The recipe was adjusted to have equal parts Champagne and orange juice and became the MIMOSA. It is debated whether the British or French own the mimosa recipe… Who do you give credit to??

If you’re sticking to the original recipe, you’ll need to make sure you’re pouring Champagne. However, we recommend Cava in it’s place for your next boozy brunch. The grapes and method used to make Cava yields a similar flavor profile to Champagne, but won’t break the bank!

Aperol Spritz Premium Vector | Aperol spritz cocktail watercolor hand drawn illustration  drink clipart on white background

The aperol spritz was created in 1919 in an effort to beat the heat of the Italian summer. The name comes from the Italian word aperitif, an alcoholic drink taken before a meal to stimulate the appetite. Back in the 1800s the spritzer became popular in northern Italy as the foreign soldiers found the Italian wines too strong and added water. So, the aperol spritz was created by combining the ideas of a spritzer and aperitif. 

The recipe calls for Prosecco, Aperol, and sparkling water (or club soda). 

Sangria

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Sangria had its start over 2,000 years ago by the Spainiards. They would add wine to their water to kill off any bacteria, but then add additional fruits to the drink to mask the bad taste of the table wine being used. Over time, recipes were perfected to create the best Sangria. There is no one real recipe as it can be done in many different ways. The key is to let the mixture sit for a long period of time so the wine can soak up the flavors from the fruit. Sangria is traditionally made with red wine, citrus fruits, and sparkling water or soda. Other alcohols like citrus liquor, brandy, and vermouth can be added as well.

French 75

French 75 MidCentury Cocktail Series Illustration | Cocktail illustration,  Cocktail art, French 75

This cocktail dates back to WW1. As the name might suggest, it was created in France at the New York Bar in Paris by Harry MacElhon. It is said, “the cocktail had so much kick it felt like being shelled with the powerful French 75mm field gun”. The original recipe calls for gin or cognac, fresh lemon juice, simple syrup, and Champagne. Using gin will create a lighter, more floral drink better suited for warmer weather and cognac will make the drink a little heavier and likely better enjoyed in cooler weather. 

Bellini

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This simple seeming cocktail may be the Italian cousin to the mimosa. The traditional recipe calls for peach puree and Prosecco. If you’ve never tried a bellini, you can expect it will be a bit sweeter due to the peach and sweeter tasting notes often found in Prosecco. The bellini was created by Giuseppe Cipriani, founder of the iconic Harry’s Bar in Venice, Italy. The bar still operates today and tourists flock here to have a taste of the original bellini where it was created. Fun fact, the bar was a popular spot among big names like Humphrey Bogart, Truman Capote, and Earnest Hemingway. 

Wine Spritzer

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Now this is a cocktail that you can get creative with and make to fit your tastes. Simply add ice and sparkling water to your favorite wine! We recommend sticking with lighter bodied, fruit forward wines for a more refreshing drink, but you can use whatever wine you like. In addition to any light bodied rose, here are a few we recommend:

White wine spritzers: Pinot Grigio, Riesling, Chenin Blanc, Albarino, Sauvignon Blanc.

Red wine spritzers: Pinot Noir, Grenache, Nebbiolo, Lambrusco


These next two cocktails feature Vermouth, which is a fortified wine. In simple terms, fortified wine is a wine that has had a distilled spirit (usually brandy) added to it. In turn, this increases the alcohol content. 

 

Manhattan

Manhattan Cocktail Greeting Card - Blank – TCB

The Manhattan, allegedly, became the most popular cocktail in the world after its creation in NYC in 1880. The recipe calls for two parts whiskey, one part sweet vermouth and bitters. This cocktail tends to be a favorite when the weather cools off, so we may need to wait a few months here in San Diego to start enjoying them on a regular basis. 

Negroni

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Legend has it, the negroni was created in Florence, Italy by Count Camillo Negroni in 1919. The drink was adapted from the Milano-Torino. There are so many fun variations of the negroni, but the classic recipe calls for equal parts gin, campari, and vermouth. If you’ve been on tik tok or instagram in the last year, you’ve likely heard of a negroni sbagliato… with prosecco in it. Two actors from House of the Dragon  mentioned this (in their gorgeous English accents) as their favorite drink and it exploded in popularity! This variation of the drink swaps out the gin for prosecco, making it even more of a wine based cocktail.

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