Yes, but what sangria to drink? And not in the park, tipplers, it’s against the rules. Didn’t you see the sign?
After a perfect day walking along the coast, stopping occasionally to listen to the waves, enjoying a picnic and then snoozing in the sun before gathering meadowsweet and crocosmia, my darling wife, the redoubtable Madame G., and I returned to our lovely home, Rose Cottage, where I poured the sangria while she prepared our supper.
An equitable division of labour, you’ll agree.
Today’s Sangria of the week is a racy, rustic and gloriously refreshing Apple Sangria.
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In a large pitcher I add 2 thinly chopped apples- 1 red and 1 Granny Smith and pour over a full bottle of chilled Pinot Grigio.
I used the fresh, fragrant and easy-drinking 2021 Pinot Grigio Della Venezie (£4.49, Lidl).
This unoaked Italian white is brimful of juicy peach and sharper lime flavours alongside grassy and herbaceous aromatics.
Next I add 250 ml good Prosecco - I chose the lipsmackingly crisp, reassuringly complex and satisfyingly savoury Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore Extra Dry (£7.99, Lidl).
This effervescent Italian fizz greets you with captivating floral aromas before a richly textured palate that teems with tangy berry and slightly sharper citrus flavours.
Stir slowly and leave to chill for several hours. As a final touch before serving add a generous handful of frozen grapes for a veritable mouthful of summer in a glass.
Why not treat yourself to this simple sangria next Saturday to mark World Cocktail Day as well?
Today’s Wine range of the week, in fact possibly the wine range of the year so far is M&S Classics - excellent representations of all your favourite grapes and blends at very affordable prices.
My second recommendation is the superbly balanced, exuberantly juicy and delicately spiced M&S Classics Carmenere (£8).
Well-defined, ripe blackcurrant and plum flavours, a lean, muscular body and an intensely expressive deep garnet hue combine to create a memorably elegant and mellow drop.
Throw some lamb chops on the barbecue and serve with a leafy green salad and this exquisite Chilean red.
And finally, today’s Wine of the Week is the remarkably zesty, upbeat and almost spritzy 2021The Society’s Vinho Verde AOC (from The Wine Society, visit www.thewinesociety.com or telephone 01438-741177).
Vibrant floral aromatics gently yield to sharp citrus and luscious fruit flavours- green apples abound - alongside intriguing backnotes that seem suggestive of elderflowers and gooseberries and a delightfully discreet acidity.
The flavours are nicely judged and perfectly complementary and went wonderfully well with my Madame’s delicious tuna, red onion and chickpea salad.
Alas, all our days, even the perfect ones, like our imperfect lives must come to an end.
And this is where I must end today with the thought that happiness is perhaps just a big word for lots of lovely fleeting moments and the odd perfect day like this one.
Useless to try to capture it, just be open to it as it hurries through.
Wine helps. So does love. Till next week, tipplers, sante!