Beer, wine, and spirits delivered.

Gifts & Guides

5 summery red wine cocktails that aren’t sangrias

Don’t get us wrong — we love a good red sangria. But they could be a little… played out? Maybe even a little… basic? 

Summer is imminent, and if you’re really looking to impress friends and intimidate enemies at a sunny soiree, then consider a different kind of red wine cocktail. 

Yes, we said red wine. In the summer.

Before you go wagging a finger at the darker stuff, take a look at some of the cocktails below, which we believe are just as cool and refreshing as any sangria. We even took out the guesswork and selected the perfect red for each cocktail. 

All we ask is that you wear sunscreen at the soiree, so you don’t turn as red as the wine.

Nouveau Sun-garee

with Louis Jadot Beaujolais Villages

This is our take on Jim Meehan’s delicious Nouveau Sangaree, only made more summery with slight changes. We kept the Beaujolais Nouveau (since it’s in the name, it’s pretty important), but we swapped out the apple brandy with a seasonally-appropriate cherry brandy and the maple syrup with honey simple syrup. Since the wine is light and bright to begin with, it will play well with these summer flavors. 


  • 2 oz Louis Jadot Beaujolais Villages
  • 1¼ oz Cherry brandy
  • ½ oz Sloe gin
  • ½ oz Honey syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Peach slices, for garnish


  • Add the wine, cherry brandy, sloe gin, honey syrup and Angostura bitters into a mixing glass with ice and stir until chilled.
  • Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
  • Garnish with thin peach slices.

How to make honey syrup:

Add 1 cup of honey and ½ cup of water to a saucepan (Honey is less sweet than granulated sugar, so to maintain a certain level of sweetness, use a 2:1 ratio). Bring to just a rolling boil, then remove from heat and let cool to room temperature. Store in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.

Lucifer's Happy Hour

with Woodbridge Merlot Red Wine

Tequila and merlot together sounds like a match made in hell, but like most sins, it’s actually quite fun. A super dry merlot works best because it allows you to control the sweetness and adds a subtle acidity to the end result. A nice blanco or joven tequila brightens up the cocktail, too. 


  • 1 oz Woodbridge Merlot 
  • ¾ oz Blanco or joven tequila
  • ½ oz Simple syrup
  • ½ oz Blue curaçao
  • ½ oz Fresh lime juice
  • Sparkling water
  • Cocktail cherries and lime wedge, for garnish


  • In a mixing glass, combine red wine and simple syrup with a bar spoon until thoroughly blended. 
  • Add blue curaçao, tequila, and fresh lime juice, then stir with ice to mix. 
  • Strain into Tom Collins glass filled with ice. 
  • Top off with a splash of sparkling water and garnish with cocktail cherries and lime wedge.

The Kalimotxo

with Marques De Riscal Reserva Rioja

If you’ve been to the Basque part of Spain in recent years, you may have seen locals drinking this cocktail, made with the nation’s signature wine export. Pronounced kah-lee-MOH-cho, this fizzy, lemony, wine-y concoction is so perfect for summer that we didn’t change a damn thing. Plus, it’s regularly field-tested by thirsty Spaniards in notoriously gorgeous weather. And to that kind of popularity, we say Olé! 


  • 3 oz Marques De Riscal Reserva Rioja
  • 3 oz Coca-Cola
  • ½ oz Fresh lemon juice
  • Lemon wedge, for garnish


  • Add all the ingredients into a wine glass or rocks glass with ice.
  • Garnish with a lemon wedge.

Slip 'N' Sour

with Bogle Old Vine Zinfandel 

A bold, fruit-forward wine like a zinfandel is what separates this cocktail from the rest on our list. But, we use just enough to compliment the other ingredients, not overpower them. We recommend using a whiskey finished in a rum cask, like Angel’s Envy Rum Cask Rye or Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey. It may look like an 1870 Sour, but it’s got more zest to it, now primed and ready for whatever backyard shenanigans you get up to. 


  • 2 oz Rum-casked whiskey
  • 1 oz Meyer lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • ¾ oz Thyme simple syrup
  • ¾ oz Aquafaba (or, 1 egg white)
  • 1 tsp Blueberry jam
  • 1 oz Bogle Old Vine Zinfandel


  • Add the whiskey, Meyer lemon juice, thyme syrup, Aquafaba/egg white and blueberry jam into a shaker and dry-shake (without ice) for 10 seconds.
  • Fill the shaker with ice and shake until well-chilled.
  • Double-strain into an 8-ounce Mason jar.
  • Float the wine on top using a bar spoon.

Nun on the Beach

with 19 Crimes Red Blend

The Bishop is a classic cocktail with lots of rum and a relatively small splash of wine. With our spin, we’re keeping the church theme, upping the wine count, and hopefully solidifying it as the next great beachside sipper. For the wine, pick any red blend that you love to drink on its own — the other complimenting ingredients are very easy and breezy. We hope you make a habit of drinking it this summer. 


  • 2 oz Gold rum
  • 1½ oz 19 Crimes Red Blend
  • ½ oz Peach schnapps
  • ½ oz Simple syrup
  • ¼ oz Fresh lime juice
  • Cocktail umbrella


  • Add rum, wine, peach schnapps, simple syrup, and lime juice into a shaker and shake well with ice. 
  • Strain into an inconspicuous vessel with ice. 
  • Garnish with a cocktail umbrella. 
  • Sip casually at the beach; feel only a little naughty.

How to make thyme syrup:

Add 1 cup of granulated sugar and 1 cup of water to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat, then add 5-6 fresh thyme sprigs. Steep for 15-30 minutes, depending on how strong a flavor you want. Store in the fridge for up to 3 weeks. 

Popular Posts

Subscribe to The Stir

Get sippable stories delivered to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, you agree that Drizly and its corporate affiliates may send deals, updates about the Drizly platform, and other marketing messages to the email address that you have provided. You further agree that the information you have provided will be stored and processed pursuant to Drizly’s Privacy Notice, available at

The rosé spirit boom

The best beer to bring to the BBQ

The canned paloma is here to stay

Download the Drizly App