White Sangria

Sangria, dressed in white. In this version, sangria doffs its red color and takes on a paler shade. White wine is blended with toasted spicy, sharp ginger liqueur, sweet Meyer lemon juice, and honey. Make this sangria blush by substituting the white wine with rosé.

Meyer lemons are a sweeter version of standard lemons, thought to be a cross of lemons and either oranges or mandarins. Kumquats are small, oval citrus fruits with a thin peel and tart flesh. They can be eaten out of hand, without peeling, and make a lovely garnish. Growers recommend rubbing the fruits between the palms of your hands before eating or using them in recipes, to release the rind’s natural oils.–Maria del Mar Sacasa

LC Substitute With Caution Note

We try, we really try, not to be bossy. But we do feel the need to offer a stern caution to would-be substituters about monkeying around with this stunning recipe. While we can see the temptation to use standard lemons in place of Meyer lemons and simple syrup instead of honey syrup, we advise against it. The beguilingly sweet smack of Meyer lemons keeps everything in lovely and harmonious balance, and the honey syrup lends a lovely nuance to the punch. If you just can’t help yourself from tweaking something, tweak the types of fruit you plunk in your punch. One tester tossed in some persimmon. We bet some insanely sweet, crisp chunks of Asian pear would be lovely, too. Or, if you live in a place where Meyer lemons happen to be available at the same time as golden raspberries, Queen Anne’s cherries, or white peaches, we’re quite fond of the notion of tossing some of them into the punch bowl, too.

White Sangria Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 15 M
  • 15 M
  • Serves 24

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon whole allspice berries
  • 1/2 cups honey
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
  • Two 750-milliliter bottles rather sweet white wine, such as Riesling, chilled
  • 2 cups fresh Meyer lemon juice, strained and chilled
  • 2 cups chilled club soda
  • 1 cup Domaine de Canton or other ginger liqueur, chilled
  • 3 cups green grapes, chilled and halved
  • 2 cups kumquats, thinly sliced crosswise, preferably organic (optional)

Directions

  • 1. Place the peppercorns and allspice in a small saucepan and stir over medium heat until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir in the honey, water, and ginger, and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
  • 2. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl and discard the solids. Stir in the cooled syrup, wine, lemon juice, club soda, liqueur, grapes, and kumquats in a punch or other large serving bowl. Ladle into cups or mugs or flutes or any festive vessel. Clink!
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Testers Choice

Testers Choice
Testers Choice
Jo Ann Brown

Nov 20, 2013

This version of white sangria is posh. In other words, I’d make it for a super-special event like a bridal shower or a girl’s weekend. It’s not that it’s difficult to prepare, not at all. But it does take a bit of thought and a few extra steps and ingredients beyond opening a bottle and adding a splash of this and that to reach the level of elevation this sangria has accomplished. A few testing notes: One big achievement for this recipe was the ginger. I found it amazingly warm and sexy. As with all good cocktails, there is a balance achieved between the sweet and tart components. As you’ll notice, there is a plethora of lemon juice, which makes it important to use a sweet wine, as suggested. A Chardonnay is just too dry and middle road to climb over the pucker factor. I also think the Meyer lemon variety is chosen very specifically. (Since I know well these are a rare and beautiful gift each holiday season, I’d substitute the conventional variety and add more than a bit of freshly squeezed orange juice to emulate the Meyer.) To garnish, I substituted one pink lemon and one persimmon for the kumquats. The muted orange of the persimmon hinted at the lovely fall season.

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