This 4th of July I was invited to a dear friends home for drinks and a front row view of the Bayside’s annual Fireworks display. Instead of bringing a bottle of wine, I opted to try my hands at some Sangria. I went online, browsing through several recipes including a few from Emeril’s, Bobby Flays, and Better Homes and Gardens. None of them spoke to me. Having grasped the overall concept of the drink, I decided to conjure up my own recipe, and guess what, it was a hit!

Makes: Average 50 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients: 1 Magnum sized (1.5L) bottle of Sweet red

1 Magnum sized (1.5L) bottle of Merlot

1 750mL Bottle of orange soda

1 1/2 Cups of Brandy

6 oz. of brown sugar simple syrup (about 7 table spoons of brown sugar and 7 table spoons of water, microwaved for 50 seconds)

2 Organic Oranges

1 Lime

1/2 Lemon

2 Organic Peaches

6 oz. Raspberries (1 container of Driscolls)

1 whole Organic Fuji Apple

For Presentation: Ikea lincent glass bottles (about $3 each)

Instructions:  Mix all the liquids together and throw in the sliced fruit. When dicing your citrus be sure to include all the residual juices. Keep the sangria in a tightly sealed container. The longer it sits the fruitier the taste. Keep chilled and serve with ice.