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Taste test: we try out sangrias at 5 Mumbai eateries

We get an expert mixologist to tell good sangrias from the average ones. You’re welcome

HT48HRS_Special Updated: Mar 31, 2016 19:44 IST

Every bar worth it’s liquor license makes a sangria(Photo: Shutterstock)

We get an expert mixologist to tell good sangrias from the average ones. You’re welcome.

There’s nothing like a good sangria to make a hot summer afternoon bearable. Chilled wine, mixed with fruits and preferably, good company. Weekends don’t get any better.

Of course, no two sangrias are ever the same. And almost every bar worth its liquor license makes one.

So we got Shatbhi Basu, one of India’s first female bartenders and a beverage consultant at bars such as Lima and NRI- Not Really Indian, Bandra Kurla Complex, and Harry’s Bar + Cafe, Juhu, to go sangria-drinking through town.

Here’s what she thought:

Terttulia Sunday Sangria: “It smells good — of orange, green apple and wine. It packs quite a punch and is fresh. It’s at the correct temperature. It’s not too sweet — I like it that way. It is also a pretty heavy duty drink. I miss the fizz in it though.”
Where: Terttulia, Shivaji Sea Face Road, Shivaji Park, Dadar (W)
Alcohol per cent: Between 30 to 45 per cent
Price: Rs 465 for a glass
Verdict: “I wish it was slightly lighter so that I could drink more of it on a working summer afternoon. It’s really nice though.”

Every bar does a sangria differently (Photo: Shutterstock)

Sangria Rosso: “It’s flat and not very cold. The red wine needs to be between 14 to 16 degrees of temperature to lift the flavours. The flavour of wine should be balanced but the bigger part of the drink is the wine itself. The alcohol is overpowering. It is less fresh and juicy, and heavy on the palette.”
Where: Café Zoe, Mathuradas Mills Compound, Lower Parel
Alcohol per cent: Around 45
Price: Rs 430 for a glass
Verdict: “After adding two cubes of ice and Sprite, it tastes much better.”

Sangria Melon: “There’s no fizz. It could be colder. The taste is one dimensional — you can taste only white wine and musk melon. It’s like drinking white wine with some liqueur. It should have more elements to break the monotony in taste. Perhaps adding mint would make it better.”
Where: Smoke House Deli, High Street Phoenix, Lower Parel
Alcohol per cent: Around 45
Price: Rs 350 for a glass
Verdict: “Not too bad.”

Sangria with white wine, orange juice and apple: “It just feels like having white wine with apple. There are no layers or flavours to the drink. The wine should never overpower other flavours in the drink. I would have lightened the drink a little.”
Where: The Bar Stock Exchange, Lansdowne Road, Colaba
Alcohol per cent: Around 45
Price: Rs 150 onward for a glass
Verdict: “It needs a lot more repairing.”

Also read: Taste test: We rate 10 new beers that you need to try

Blushing Sangria: “It smells fresh and of peach. It is supposed to have julienne of fruits, according to the menu, but I can hardly see any. It’s too sweet for my taste. The flavours need a lift. Sangrias are supposed to be fresh and this one is, so at least it checks that box. It is good for first-time wine drinkers.”

Where: Salt Water Café, Veer Nariman Road, Churchgate
Alcohol per cent: Around 45 per cent
Price: Rs 425 for a glass
Verdict: “Will I drink three of these? No. I’m not complaining though.”

-Shatbhi Basu is a mixologist, beverage consultant and director at STIR Academy of Bartending