Happy Washington state liquor independence day! Starting today, liquor sales are privatized in the state of Washington, and I will fight anyone who thinks this is a bad thing.
It was a very summery weekend and my friend John had invited me to a bbq in the park. I have found that sangria is perfect for a picnic, and I wanted to try something a little different from my standard rioja, orange, peach, brandy routine, so I picked up some Gewurtztraminer, carved up a pineapple and set it out to infuse. Sangria is best if you allow it to infuse over night, but if you don’t drink it all the next day, it’s not worth hanging onto. For this sangria I wanted to follow a tropical theme, so I added kiwis and orange supremes, the former of which contributed much more to the presentation than they did to the end flavor.
I knew that going in, but the romance and the drama of a drink can contribute as much to its success as its flavor. At the end of the day, you are drinking sugared ethanol, so don’t settle for function without form. Perfect every tiny detail of the drink, in order to elevate the whole experience.
One whole pineapple, carved into chunks
8 kiwis, sliced and peeled
6 Oranges, juice
4 Oranges, cut into supremes
2 cups of traditional white rum (Wray and Nephew)
1 cup of triple sec (Patron Citronge)
6 bottles (4.5 Liters) of Gewurtztraminer (Fetzer)
Allow the whole mixture to sit overnight. Chill before serving.
Since we drank this at a picnic, I ended up pouring it over crushed ice, which I chipped from a block of ice using my new ice pick. The funky flavor of the Wray and Nephew complimented the pineapple very well, but the kiwi was completely lost, as I had predicted. It might have contributed to the overall flavor, as it has a lot in common with the rum in this drink, but I doubt I would have missed it.
At first tasting, the rum was too strong, but after mellowing for a night, the flavors really came together, and the end result was crisp, dry, and fruity. Those with a sweet tooth might consider adding simple syrup to sweeten it up, but I would do this very slowly, in 1/4 cup increments. A little bit of sweetness could bring out the fruit, but too much would crush the delicate notes in the wine.