I adore the holiday season and I can't seem to get the 12 Days of Christmas out of my head. What better way to celebrate Christmas than with 12 Christmas cocktails? For the next 12 days, I will share my celebratory cocktails for the holiday season.
On the first day of Christmas, I sipped a Raspberry Port Sparkler. The California Wine Institute and California Wines share this beautiful and delicious cocktail recipe. It's the perfect blend of American flavors for the holidays. California is the leading producer in the country of red and black raspberries. When you combine that beautiful fruit with a California Sparkling and a port-style wine, you have a drink for every celebration.
Best Wines for the Raspberry Port Sparkler
I discovered Port this summer on my Viking River Cruise on the Douro River in Portugal. Wines created in the Port-style in California are not technically Ports (they must be from the Douro region of Portugal to be a port), they are as close as you can get here in the US. The Port-style wines from Quady Winery are all made in the traditional Port style. Quady uses traditional Portuguese grapes—Tinta Roriz—that are grown in California. I suggest the Batch 88 Starboard, which sells for $15.00.
There are also some great choices for the California sparkling wine for this recipe. While you can't call these Champagnes because they are not from the Champagne region of France, many use the same method (Méthode Champenois) as those made in France. California sparkling wines are usually from Chardonnay or Pinot Noir grapes. You might try an Estate Brut Cuvée from Domaine Carneros or one of the sparkling wines from Domaine Chandon.
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Creating the Raspberry Port Sparkler
This is a beautiful drink that you can make quickly for a holiday party. While fresh raspberries work best for this recipe, you can use frozen berries in a pinch.
- 2 raspberries
- 1 ounce California port-style wine
- California sparkling wine
- More raspberries or edible flowers for garnish, optional
- Add the raspberries and port-style wine to a flute glass.
- Use a long spoon or a chopstick to muddle them together.
- Fill the glass with sparkling wine.
- Garnish as desired and serve.
You can download a free copy of “California Wine Cocktails for the Holidays courtesy of the California Wine Institute.
There are more great cocktails for the holidays on Wander. Be sure to check out all 12 Days of Christmas Cocktails on Wander starting with Day 1 on December 1, 2019.