If you don’t drink, or don’t particularly like the flavor of Sprite, come away from this article nonetheless informed: THE NAMES OF FOODS ALWAYS LIE.
Toast Hawaii isn’t Hawaiian (it’s German), a Quarter Pounder isn’t actually 1/4 of a pound of meat (once it’s cooked and lost some of its moisture), and this isn’t actually $2. The wine was $2, the watermelon was part of my CSA box and I got the cans of 7-Up as leftovers from a wedding in the woods. But it’s a catchy name, and in late capitalism even we who resist must be mindful of branding.
I come from a family with a lot of substance abuse problems. But I am also a glutton and hedonist and exist to consume sensation before I commit my body back to the earth. So, as such, I try to have some boundaries around my drinking so that I can enjoy it without it becoming a problem—part of this is never drinking something I hate just because “it’ll work”. This often puts me at odds with my own poverty. When I’m in a place, financially, where I have to be mindful of cost, I try to make punches and cocktails, to add some ritual and extra work. It’s not a recommendation. It’s just what works for me.
You could argue that sangria goes all the way back to the Roman Empire, where they would sanitize their drinking water by mixing it with wine. You could also argue that because sangria literally means “blood”, white wine doesn’t make a proper sangria. But a white wine sangria is nice for drinking in the summer. I assume. When I’m extroverted I’m very friendly and when I’m introverted I am very irritated by small talk with strangers. I prefer to drink near a TV or pinball machines I can pretend to be occupying my attention if a rando thinks he’s got a chance with one of my drinking companions.
$2 Watermelon Sangria
1 Bottle of White Wine
1/2 of a Watermelon, cut into wedges (~15 slices)
2 Cans of Lemon-Lime Soda
1. Fill a pitcher with the wine. For this, I used Two Angels Sauvignon Blanc 2009.
2. Gently put the watermelon wedges, one by one, into the pitcher with the wine. It’s okay if some of them break off and become little sangria debris, but if you can save some that don’t break, you can make them into a very tasteful garnish when it’s ready to serve. This is why I prefer to use wedges instead of cutting them into smaller chunks (which would give a greater surface area/absorption). Before you pour in the 7-Up, you want the pitcher about 3/4th full of wine and watermelon.
3. Pour in 7-Up to the top. It’s okay if you have some leftover. Agitate the pitcher a bit to make sure it mixes.
4. Cover and put in the fridge for at least 12 hours. I left mine for two days.
What you get is a crisp, slightly tarty wine cocktail with a cool watermelon flavor that is also still pretty strong because it’s a dang whole bottle of white wine mixed with sugar.
I love drinks with elaborate, edible garnishes because I am very fidgety and snacky (especially when I drink); the wine-soaked watermelon provides all the refreshment of watermelon and white wine with absolutely zero of the elegance. You will absolutely stain your shirt eating it.
All in all, a nice summer drink to have at 1 in the morning, watching true crime and fantasizing about which part of Voltron you’d be. I think I’m an arm that wants to be a leg.