Summer is already here and people flock to the terraces looking for shelter from the scorching Spanish sun. Amid the merciless Iberian heat, locals and tourists alike crave a nice refreshing drink to quench their thirst. While locals utter easily the name of their preferred drink, foreigners might stumble across a variety of Spanish drinks they might not instantly recognise.
To help those newcomers, WabiHost has put together a rough guide to our most beloved Spanish drinks enjoy this summer in Spain. Fancy tasting some of these like true local? Wabi Host offers them at our local Foodie Walk in Madrid. Just give us a call or drop a few lines via email.
Drinks with wine
Spain is the third largest produce of wine in the world. It is then no surprise that we have some many refreshing drinks with a good local wine as base. Truth is, adding spices, fruits or herbs to wine is a practice already common in Ancient Rome, especially when the wine was…not so good. Today that practice still exists everywhere in Europe. In the North they make Mulled Wine, drank hot around Christmas. But here in the South we like cold in summer. So we have:
Probably the best-known character in this play. It is sweet, served always chilled and quite fragrant so people tend to like it quite a lot. Even those who don’t usually drink wine enjoy it.
It is actually quite easy to make so why not trying it at home? Just add the peel of one orange and one lemon (white part removed). Add a couple of spoonfuls of sugar and slices of ripe peach. Then pour a litre of cold wine and just a shot of brandy. If you like it lighter you can add some mineral water. Make sure you serve it cold so add ice if necessary.
Vermut is basically wine that has been infused with bitter herbs and sometimes a bit of sugar. This drink also popular in Italy and in France, although they differ massively in taste and aroma. In Spain we produce two varieties: red and white. You guessed it, one for each kind of wine. Some producers nowadays are experimenting with different flavours but the classic is the one yo can get from a tap at some traditional bars. Its colour is more brownish than regular wine and features a particular bittersweet flavour. Great aperitif!
Tinto de verano
“Summer red wine” could be an approximate translation. This regular wine is diluted in a bit of fizzy water to make it lighter and slightly sweeter. Always served chilled with good amounts of ice and sometimes a slice of orange. It is easy to drink so please be reminded that it does contain alcohol.
Typical from Andalusia, this drink is very popular among the young. Indeed it was the aim of whoever invented it to encourage them to drink Manzanilla wine or “fino” wine. That is the base for this refreshing drink to which you add some soda and sometimes mint. This drink is the most popular one the local fairs or festivities in Andalusia.
Drinks with beer
Like wine, beer can be a great base for a lighter more refreshing drink in summer. So in the Spanish drink that serves that purpose here is Clara. It is simply beer diluted with lemon juice or lemon soda. It goes really well with some great Spanish tapas.
For the children
The following two drinks do not contain alcohol and are perfect for those who don’t consume it. They tend to be quite sweet but not any less refreshing.
This milk-looking drink is a classic from Valencia. There, they grow a little root/fruit called “chufa” which apparently is really old. Once the chufa is collected, they wash it, crush it and mix it with fresh water, sugar and lemon juice. Its flavour is quite peculiar and not everyone might like it. I believe it is rather an acquired taste but the best thing is to try it yourself. The best time to find it fresh is at the end of winter and naturally, in Valencia. However, you can easily find some good bottled ones in many Spanish supermarkets.
Popular everywhere in Spain, this drink is made with milk that has been infused with lemon zest and cinnamon. You can add sugar or any sweetener to taste and perfect to serve really cold in a summer afternoon.
Would you like to ask us questions? Would you like a recipe or a post on any particular Spanish food? Write in the comments below and let us know what you think.
We look forward to your visit in Madrid!!