There’s a big yellow glowing thing in the sky. I’ve heard rumours that it’s the sun but it hasn’t been seen in so long nobody can be sure!

Seriously though, the weather really seems to have finally taken a turn for the better. The 19th was apparently the warmest April day ever recorded. That MUST be a sign that summer is on the way! So, while it’s still nice out, I’m going to quickly get in a couple of drinks recipes that are perfect for chilling out in the back garden or taking on a picnic with friends. Make them quietly though… in case you scare the sunshine away!

If you’re a wine lover then Sangria is a lovely refreshing drink to make up by the jug and share with friends on a warm day. The problem here is that traditionally, Sangria is made with red wine and if you’re anything like me, some of those friends will be white wine drinkers and completely unwilling to even look at something made with red. Philistines…

Anyway, in the interests of inclusion (it is 2018 after all), I’ve found a white wine version and even a rose recipe for the non wine drinkers :p


Traditional Red Wine Sangria




When selecting your wine, go for something light and fruity like a grenache. The simple syrup in this recipe can be made with equal parts sugar and water, heat to dissolve and leave to cool before using.


You will need:

* 2 bottles of red wine of your choice.

* 250mls of brandy

* 125mls of cointreau

* 250mls of fresh orange juice

* 250mls of lemonade

* 125mls of simple syrup. This is equal parts water and sugar, heat to dissolve and cool before using.

* Orange slices

* Lemon slices

* Apple slices

* Blackberries

* Large sealable jug/container or large mason jar style drinks dispenser which you can easily pick up in most homeware stores for around £10. These are great for easy pouring and also keep wasps and bugs from going for a swim in your cocktail!


Slice up all your fruit and pop into the container.

Add all the wet ingredients except the lemonade and stir well.

Pop the lid onto your container.

Leave to marinate in the fridge overnight or for as long as possible before serving.

Add the lemonade just before you serve and stir well to combine.


Rose and Berry Sangria




The red berries in this really bring out the berry flavours in the wine. You could substitute the fresh berries for frozen, it wont really make a difference to the temperature as you’ll be leaving it to chill, but frozen berries tend to burst during freezing meaning the juices will infuse more easily.


You will need:

* 2 bottles rose wine

* 125ml Edinburgh Gin raspberry liquer

* 125ml Cherry brandy

* 400ml lemonade

* 100ml lime cordial

* 175g raspberries

* 175g blackberries

* 175g starwberries

* Large sealable pitcher or dispenser


Slice your strawberries and bruise the raspberries and blackberries so the flavours will infuse well.

Add the fruit to the pitcher.

Pour in your wine, raspberry gin and cherry brandy and stir well.

Seal your container and leave to chill for at least two hours, overnight is even better.

Add the lemonade and lime cordial before serving and stir well.

Serve over ice.


Pineapple & Mango White Sangria




I’d recommend something fresh and fruity for this one, a Sauvignon Blanc or Chenin Blanc would be ideal. Feel free to use frozen mango or tinned pineapple in this cocktail, you could even use the juice from the tin in place of fresh pineapple juice.


You will need:

* 2 bottles white wine

* 250ml peach schnapps

* 500g fresh mango chunks

* 500g fresh pineapple chunks

* 250ml pineapple juice

* 125ml simple syrup


Cut your mango and pineapple into small chunks.

Add the cut fruit to your container.

Pour in all the liquid ingredients and stir well

Cap the container and transfer to the fridge to chill for at least two hours, overnight is better.

Stir before serving over ice.


Whichever one you choose to try, enjoy!