Summer Peach and Basil Sangria is the ultimate in summer refreshment, and this is THE drink you’ll want to have chilling in the backyard all season long…
White sangrias are so refreshing, and when you add ripe peaches and a hint of fresh herby basil, you get a spectacular drink with very little effort.
The major components of classic Sangria are wine, fruit, and brandy. The fruit is cut up and mixed with the alcohol ahead of time and refrigerated for several hours, or even overnight, to allow the flavors to mingle. That makes sangria the perfect drink to serve to friends, because it’s all ready to go before the first guest even arrives. My favorite way to serve a sangria or summer punch is in a big vintage Mason Jar dispenser…everybody gets to help themselves, and there’s no rush to get every guest set up with a drink. The dispenser filled with fruity sangria is gorgeous on its own, and when mine isn’t being used for a party, I like to keep it on the counter filled with water and sliced lemons or strawberries.
The nice thing about sangria is that it’s pretty open ended. There aren’t a lot of set rules, as long as you have wine and fruit. My variation is light and especially delicious because I’ve substituted ripe peaches for the traditional mix of fruit. The hint of fresh basil can be infused into the drink in a coupe of ways, depending on your taste. You can simply add the leaves to the wine along with the cut peaches and allow them to subtly flavor the sangria. But you can go a step further and get a stronger flavor by making up a quick basil simple syrup.
Basil simple syrup is easy to make, just stir a cup of water and a cup of sugar together in a saucepan, add a handful of fresh basil leaves, and bring everything to a boil. Turn off the heat and let it cool completely. I like to smash the basil a little bit with the back of a spoon to release extra flavor. When the syrup is cool, strain it, and refrigerate until needed. You’ll have a sweet syrup infused with a delicate basil flavor and scent. It gives a wonderful background note to this sangria, and you can use as much or as little of it as you like.
I used white peaches, but whatever kind you use, just be sure they are really ripe. The riper your peaches, the more peach flavor will infuse into your sangria.
Summer Peach and Basil Sangria
- 1 bottle Pinot Grigio or Sauvingon Blanc wine
- 2/3 cup brandy, or peach brandy
- 1/2 cup basil simple syrup, optional
- 2 -3 ripe peaches, cut in slices
- basil leaves
- 2 cups peach seltzer water
basil simple syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- a handful of fresh basil leaves
- To make the basil simple syrup, combine the water and sugar in a saucepan and stir to dissolve the sugar. Add the basil leaves and crush them with the back of a spoon to release their flavor. Bring the pan to a boil, and then turn off the heat and let cool completely in the pan. Then strain the syrup through a fine mesh seive into a glass jar. Refrigerate until needed.
- Combine the wine, brandy, sliced peaches, basil leaves, and basil syrup, if using. Let this hang out in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight. Just before serving add the seltzer water. Serve the sangria over ice garnished with fresh peach slices and a basil leaf.