Eric's Dirty Thirty Rosé Sangria

Last weekend happened to be my 30th birthday (wow!), and I decided to throw myself a big birthday party since the last one I had was years and years ago. After considering a few different venues, I finally decided that what I would like best was to have a big, casual pool party at my apartment building, so that friends could come and go (or linger) as they liked.

I was counting on my friends to provide some extra libations and supplementary snacks, but I knew that I would have to have a bunch of goodies on hand myself, and I thought that I’d like to include a theme drink for the afternoon.

If you ask me, nothing says summer pool party more than a frosty glass of sangria, so that’s what I decided to make. Lest you think these years of food and wine writing have all gone for naught, however, I was not going to make any old common sangria. I needed a little twist, and as I thought of it over a refreshing aperitif glass of rosé, it came to me: rosé sangria!

Now, you’d think this would be pretty common, but after a brief, informal poll of my friends, I found that not a one of the 15 or so I told my idea had ever had anything like it/ Then I realized, there was probably a reason no one had tried rosé sangria before! I brushed aside my anxieties and set to work thinking about the flavor combination (mango-strawberry!)…and finding a cooler big enough for the batch I was going to make. Little did I know that even the 5-gallon one I borrowed wouldn’t be enough, and I would eventually run through six, yes six, batches of the stuff at the party. That should give you some idea of how popular it was.

While I was bragging about my spirit’s success one evening last week, my friend, Caroline on Crack, asked why I didn’t put the recipe up on Eric The Epicure, and after looking at her with befuddlement for a moment, I said I didn’t know. So I set to work chronicling the potable preparation.

This is not the exact recipe I used (especially as I got to batches 4-6 and had to improvise with the ingredients a bit), but it’s the scaled-down version for a dinner party aperitif, and you can simply multiply the ingredients as necessary for your numbers. I’ve based this off the use of a single bottle of wine, though, for convenience’s sake. Now, without further preamble, here’s my recipe for…

Eric’s Dirty Thirty Rosé Sangria


-1 Bottle Rosé

This is the key ingredient, and you’ve got to be a little careful with it since you’re looking for a rosé that’s got strawberry notes to it, but also something a little more tropical. Whatever you do, don’t get anything that’s got too much cherry in it, or that is too citrusy. I’d suggest heading to Trader Joe’s and picking up a bottle of either the Cellier du Rhone or the La Ferme Julien for a cool $4.99. The Graham Beck rosé from South Africa will also work, and has been available at Whole Foods lately for $4.99 as well. It’s all about the bargains!

-1-1 1/2 Cups Rum

You want something really neutral-flavored, so the clearer the color the better. Just plain old Bacardi will work just fine, and is cheap at about $10/bottle.

-2 Cups Strawberry Lemonade

-1 Cup Mango Nectar or Juice

You don’t want too much of this since the flavor is really powerful, and it will dilute the pink color of the rosé

-1 Cup Fresh Mango, Chopped

-1 Cup Fresh Strawberries, Chopped

-Ice, Cubed or Crushed

-Sprigs of Mint or Lemon Verbena, Optional


Chill all the ingredients in the refrigerator for several hours before preparation.

Pour bottle of rosé into punch bowl (or oversize pitcher, or insulated pourable cooler depending on the classiness quotient of your event).

Add rum.

Add mango nectar/juice.

Add strawberry lemonade until the color has resumed its rosy pink. You don’t have to use all the strawberry lemonade, but can include as much as you’d like for the taste you prefer.

Add chopped fruit to the mixture.

Serve in chilled glasses (or just plain plastic if you’re throwing a party!) with ice cubes and chopped fruit on top. If you’re feeling fancy, add a sprig of mint or lemon verbena for decoration.


Anonymous said…
Delicious recipe. Thanks, Eric!