The Ultimate Guide to Wine Cocktails
Whiskey sour. Vodka martini. Gin fizz.
Who gave liquor a monopoly on cocktails? Sure, a splash of spirit, soda, and spices makes a classic combo, but don’t leave wine out in the cold.
Often overlooked when it comes to crafting a delicious mixed drink, wine has carved out a permanent home in any cocktail handbook. There are hundreds of exciting, delicious wine cocktail recipes just waiting to be sipped.
Prepare to stock up your cellar because we’ve compiled a list of ten of our favorite wine cocktails tailor-made for hot summer days and cold wintry nights.
Red Wine Cocktails
When it comes to crafting the ultimate dinner party beverage, there’s simply no substitute for red wine sangria. Bursting with chunky fruit and balanced with full-bodied red wine, this flavorful cocktail works great with a George Phillips Red Blend or a Spanish Tempranillo.
To brew a pitcher for friends, start with two bottles of fruity red wine. Then, add one cup each of pitted cherries, fresh raspberries, sliced peaches, and Grand Marnier along with a quarter-cup of an elderflower liqueur and lemon zest.
Stir, pop it in the fridge for a couple of hours and add a half-bottle of cava. Finally, you’re ready to ladle your sangria into a waiting glass with a sprig or two of fresh mint for garnish.
A stark contrast to a summer sangria, a Francophile makes a toasty drink for a chilly evening. Pairing a bold French brandy, Calvados, with a fruity Rioja wine and sweet accompaniment forms a pleasant drink for any winter night.
Add one and a half ounces of Rioja wine to one ounce of Calvados. Mix with three ounces of cold water, a half-ounce of cinnamon simple syrup along with a spritz of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Heat over low heat until warm while avoiding a rolling simmer. Finally, crank off the heat, pour into a comfy mug and serve with a cinnamon stick and fresh apple slice.
Red Wine Spritzer
If you’re running low on time or chunky fruit, a red wine spritzer provides similar flavors to a traditional sangria. Low on calories and bursting with bubbles, these drinks are a simple, refreshing option for a hot summer day.
To make a red wine spritzer, pour a half-glass of your favorite chilled red wine and top it off with an equal amount of club soda. Before sipping, add a splash of citrus with a slice of orange or lemon firmly wedged on the rim.
White Wine Cocktails
Watermelon White Wine Spritzer
There’s no better drink suited for a summer beach day than a watermelon white spritzer. This drink easily satisfies a sweet tooth while providing a cooling respite from the sweltering sun overhead.
To make a small pitcher, add two cups of cold watermelon cubes along with a tablespoon of agave nectar. Then, add two cups of your favorite dry white wine along with equal parts club soda. To finish with taste, stick a watermelon wedge on the rim of each glass.
Albariño Mint Julep
Substituting potent bourbon with an Iberian white wine, an Albariño Mint Julep makes bright, crisp company for a lazy afternoon.
To craft your own white wine Mint Julep, add 3 ounces of albariño wine and one teaspoon of high-quality peach liqueur to a Julep glass. Finish with a generous heap of crushed ice along with a bittersweet bundle of mint sprigs.
A less-popular member of the aperitivo family along with the Negroni and Americano, the Bicicletta is a simple, succulent cocktail made up of only three ingredients: white wine, Campari, and club soda. Packed with more bitterness than a traditional Aperol Spritz, a Bicicletta is a perfect option to wind down in the early evening.
To make a Bicicletta, mix three ounces of a dry white like Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio along with two ounces of Campari. To finish, top your glass off with ice, club soda, and an orange wheel or two.
Scrumptious rosé cocktail
Rosé Wine Cocktails
Rosé Wine Spritzer
Bright and bubbly, a rosé spritzer makes the perfect antidote for the sweltering summer sun. With a refreshing palate and playful pink hue, this simple spritzer makes for easy, sweet sipping.
To whip up a simple glass, all you need is a delicate rosé, club soda, and ice. Though, if you want to help your spritzer truly fulfill its potential, look for a few extra ingredients captured in our scrumptious spritzer recipe.
Surprise your friends with a few glasses by the pool to turn an ordinary afternoon into an event to remember.
Break out your blenders, because no drink will satisfy your sweet tooth quite like a frozen rosé cocktail (AKA frosé).
With a slushy-like texture and succulent sugar in every sip, a delightfully chilled frosé is bound to become a mainstay in your cocktail repertoire.
Just remember to use a full-bodied, darker rosé as your base. These varietals retain their strong flavors in an icy mixture much better than their more delicate counterparts:
Sparkling Wine Cocktails
French toast and grapefruit might be the stars of the show, but no brunch is truly complete without a thirst-quenching glass of mimosa.
To make your own succulent mimosa, simply fill a champagne flute with equal parts sparkling wine and fresh-squeezed orange juice. If you’d like to add an extra dimension to each sip, splash in a bit of pineapple juice or a tablespoon of your favorite liqueur like a Grand Marnier or Chambord.
If you prefer apples to oranges, even better. Try a caramel-apple mimosa, made up of sparkling wine, chilled apple cider, decadent caramel vodka, and fresh apple slices. Enjoy in the afternoon, evening, or any time that you’re thirsting for a sweet, sparkling drink.
Mimosa’s just-as-tasty cousin, a smooth, creamy Bellini’s made up of prosecco and peach juice. If you’re in the thick of summer heat, this delicious, nectary treat tastes even better frozen.
To make a frozen Bellini, pop some frozen peach slices into a blender along with some chilled Prosecco. If that’s not quite enough peach flavor for you, add in an extra half-cup of peach nectar. Now, blend for thirty seconds, serve immediately, and enjoy!
Designed just for us by Chef Geoffrey Zakarian, this tasty cocktail puts a French twist on a classic Italian aperitif.
Made up of Aperol, Champagne or Prosecco, a small splash of bitters, and orange slices, each sip promises to be bubbly, refreshing, and an absolutely surefire way to transform a routine evening into a fun and fruity adventure.
Dating back to the 1850s, a classic Champagne cocktail delivers extra sugary sweetness to every delicious, bubbly sip.
To make your own Champagne cocktail, soak a sugar cube in Angostura bitters and drop the cube into your favored flute. Then, top your glass off with Champagne or your preferred sparkling wine and garnish with a twist of citrus, either lemon or orange. If you haven’t got a cube handy, substitute one teaspoon of sugar and 3-5 dashes of bitters.
Delicious red sangria
Mix It Up With Wine Insiders
There’s nothing quite as satisfyingly simple as a tasty glass of red or white, but there’s always more fun to be had by pairing your favorite bottle with sugary, spiced company. cocktails. Use one of our wine cocktail recipes above or come up with your own — there are always exciting combinations waiting to be created.
Or if you’d prefer, try one of our ready-to-drink wine cocktails like Our Flybird Grapefruit and Strawberry Margarita.