When you think about Spain the first thing that comes to mind is tapas and terraces, or Spanish cocktails for those who knows more. The root of Spanish culture is hanging out with friends and family at a terrace while drinking and eating tapas. If you’re from a country where this is not so popular don’t worry, you’ll easily get used to it! For me, the adaptation was pretty easy as in France we also love hanging out at a terrace during the whole year even if it’s cold or raining. In fact, I speak here more for the Americans who read this blog who might not be so used to the European lifestyle!
Spanish people especially love to drink cerveza and you will commonly find 2 principal brands from Barcelona: Estrella and Moritz. If you’re not that adventurous and just want to drink some international blend, everything is available in Barcelona. There are so many typical spanish cocktails so I’ve decided to narrow it down to the most famous one’s that you must must must checkout.
One of the most well-known is sangria but you can have all different types of sangria : with wine, cava or champagne it depends of your mood and the time of the day. It is more traditional in the south of Spain but, what with so many tourists coming to try it, you can buy it everywhere in Barcelona
There is no real traditional recipe, so it all depends on your taste, whether you love it sweet, with lots of alcohol or fruity. But the “traditional” one is composed of the cheapest wine that you can find, the cheapest hard liquor and the cheapest fruit like apple, orange, peach (it depends on the season, but here you can have pretty much any fruit at any season, which is another good thing about Spain) and a sparkling lemon drink. To sweeten this mix, don’t forget to add some honey or sugar (brown is more tasty than the regular one) and cinnamon. For a variation of your sangria you can change the wine for cava (a typical catalonian white or pink sparkling wine) or even with champagne. It will make your Sangria sparkle and don’t forget to add some ice cubes as it will keep the drink fresh.
This cocktail is one of the easiest to do as the drink is almost the same as sangria but with some differences. The hard liquor and the fruits are where we diverge here. The Tinto Verano is one of the most typical drinks that you can have at home because each person mixes his or her own drink. To get a Tinto Verano you only have to mix red wine with lemonade (here the most famous lemonade used is La Casera). If you want to put a fancy touch on it add a piece of lemon and rum (I think dark rum is tastier than white in this case but it all depends on your taste).
Cava is a typical spanish drink produced in Catalonia. This is the Spanish sparkling wine which is quite like champagne but Cava is only composed of white grapes, which are more acidic and so Cava is fresher than champagne. Whereas the Champagne is composed of two kinds of grape: the Pinot Meunier and the Pinot Noir. To me it’s all the same but to a wine connoisseur, it makes a big difference.
Clara is typically Spanish but especially from Madrid. This is a mix between beer and lemonade. It’s super refreshing and pretty light. Sometimes they use 7-up but they also can use “gaseosa“. Perfect for a summer’s evening!
A typical summer cocktail for me needs to contain rum or tequila. So when I think about summer I picture myself on a terrace with a mojito. For me a mojito is the most typical drink for a summer. The basis of a mojito is rum, white or brown it always depends on your taste, though white is traditional.. Here every Barcelona bar offers mojito from 3€ to 6€ but for me the best mojito is one that you create yourself. It’s pretty easy, all you need is a mojito glass, rum, soda and different kinds of fruit. Indeed the good thing about mojito is the fact that you’re not obliged to use only mint and lime and you can always replace it with strawberries, mango or even cucumber. I’ve even had one mixed with berries and chambord which was absolutely delicious!
For a great mojito recipe click on this link : mojito recipe.
When talking about summer cocktails I can’t forget Ernest Hemingway’s favorite drink : The Daiquiri, and there is also the Margarita and Caipirinha.
Take some time for you, order a cocktail and drink responsibly.
-by Kok Natha HEN.