Recently, my husband and I had a rare chance to spend some time together away from the kids – we flew down to Cabo, San Lucas, for the weekend. The resort we stayed at was all inclusive, and there was a lot of alcohol available. A lot of it was Sangria – but I find the traditional Sangria drink is too tart for my taste.
When I was down there, I missed the richer, fruitier taste of my favorite Hawaiian-style drinks. So after I came home, I decided to give the basic Isla Sangria an upgrade. My version uses white wine, fresh mango, lime juice, nectarines, calamansi fruit – plus a shot of tequila to give it that authentic margarita kick.
The Isla Sangria is a refreshing alcoholic drink that is easy to prepare. This is a very tropical drink that needs to be served ice cold or the flavors will clash a bit.
This one is really special because it’s made with the juice of the calamansi fruit, a delectable treat that most Americans don’t know much about. The calamansi is from Asia and the Philippines, and it’s sort of a cross between a lime and an orange. Very unique flavor.
When I decided to spruce up my Sangria with these richer tropical flavors and more sweetness, I was really pleased with the results. My Isla Sangria Margarita is really popular with friends and neighbors, especially during the summer time! The cubed mango soaks up some of the flavor of the Sangria, adding a rich fruitiness that reminds me of my days growing up in Hawaii. The Isla Sangria is an enjoyable change to an old favorite.
It can be made one-by-one or in a punch bowl. You can use either honey or sugar to sweeten it, by the way. Swapping-out your favorite fruits would be a great way to make this one your own.
- 4 cups or one bottle of chilled white wine. Using a sweet wine is preferable
- 2 cups of mango nectar. This will add sweetness to the drink
- 1/2 cup calamansi juice. This tart juice will counter the sweetness of the mango juice.
- 2 large mangos peeled and diced.You can slice the fruit if desired but cubes will be easier to eat.
- 2 large nectarines pitted and diced. Depending on the glass size it is easier to cube the fruit in this drink
- 15 calamansis, halved. Use these if you are putting the drink into a punch bowl.
Freeze The Night Before
The day before your next party, mix up a batch of Isla Sangrias and make sure that the fruit is cut very small. Pour the mixture into popcicle trays in whatever shape you desire. Freeze them for at least six hours.
When ready to serve, drop a few of your Sangria-sicles into a blender or margarita maker machine (check out this one!) and top them off with a few shots of tequila and a cup or two more of chilled wine. Then, blend on high for a few 3-second bursts until they are smoothly blended.
If you want, you can reduce the fruit and just use it as an accent. This will help in the freezing of the ice pops.