Although it is autumn in Florida, our   farmers markets are getting back into high gear for November’s  busy holiday season. I found all of these fresh fruits  from near-by farms.

Bon Appetit magazine featured this recipe a few months ago. I learned to make real Spanish sangria from locals when I worked at a family vinyard in northern Spain, but this one surpasses the original in flavor and effervecent sparkle.

Chef Jose Andres, who owns six restaurants in the U. S., replaces the cava (Spanish sparkling wine) with red grape juice – for the kids.

Ingredients for Jose’s Cava Sangria

4 cups diced assorted fresh (fruit such as strawberries peaches and grapes)
2 small oranges, thinly sliced, seeded
1/2 cup brandy
1/2 cup peach liqueur
1/2 cup white grape juice
4 fresh mint sprigs
2 750-ml- bottles chilled cava or other sparkling white wine.


Combine diced fruit, sliced oranges, brandy, liquer, grape juice, and mint in a large pitcher. Chill at least one hour. Can be made 3 hours ahead. Cover; keep chilled.

Pour sparkling wine over fruit mixture. Stir to blend. Ladle sangria into glasses.

Jose likes to serve this sangria with paella. The Hill Team agrees that this pairing makes perfect partners. We also enjoy sangria with spicy grilled shrimp, pork or chicken.  We like to serve sangria at parties and holidays because of the do-ahead factor and festive fruit taste. Make your own  innovations by  adding  or substituting other fruits.