Port Wine Sangaree – jerry Thomas

One and one third wineglass of port wine

One teaspoon of sugar

Fill tumbler two-thirds with ice. Shake well and grate nutmeg on top.

We’re doing a wine evening at Goat tonight with one of our favourite suppliers, Boutinot. Suppliers are all about relationships, and Boutinot is a winner for us as one of our ex-managers is now our rep. we’re doing a pizza Armageddon kind of evening where we just keep bringing different pizza’s to the table until everyone has had ‘sufficient’. As they’re bringing a load of wine along to drink with the pizza, and just drink, I thought I should start with a wine based cocktail and decided on this.

This is another drink that I’ve seen in books forever and never made, the ingredients never really sold themselves to me, it really just looks like port wine with window dressing. The history goes way back though, the earliest reference I could find to it was a spurious 1736 British claim of invention, which sounds more fairy tale than non-fiction as the name is a derivative of the Spanish word ‘Sangre’ for blood, because of the colour. Despite the English habit of stealing words from every other language and making them our own, I’m dubious as to the lack of 18th century patriotism, especially because it had been a mere 7 years since the two nations had stopped trying to kill each other in the Mediterranean, for the third time already that century (with a 4th through 7th still to come before the 1800’s). the drink was super popular, and a variation of punch, but gradually faded from popularity until prohibition killed it for good. It did however have a revival of sorts, at the 1964 worlds fair the Americans introduced this crazy new drink called Sangria, bane of all package holiday hangovers on the Iberian peninsula, for, I suspect, centuries to come.

I made this using a vintage port we have at Goat, which is port heaven in a bottle, I needed some pre-Christmas and found some stupidly good value for money stuff from Mentzendorff. I’m also a port fan, and nutmeg, so it looked like shooting fish in a barrel on paper. In the glass it’s a bit boring, it really just tastes like port, probably doesn’t need the added sugar, and the nutmeg is beaten a bit by the port, so yes, it tastes like a glass of port. I’ll try Jerry’s red wine version later, but probably not this one again.