Joya Sangria

When it comes right down to it, I am a rather boring guy. I don’t drink beer for the most part, I can’t remember the last time I had an actual cocktail, scotch is for suckers, and mimosas are a waste of perfectly good sparkling wine (I caught my cousins using Bollinger for mimosas and I almost lost my mind—just because you are mixing in OJ does not negate the fact that you are having booze before noon—just drink the Bolly straight up for Chrissakes).

So when I was offered to sample some “Sangria” I was skeptical as it is outside my normal parameters—don’t mix any crap in with my wine, just give me the bottle and a glass and I can handle the rest. On top of the above, there was the issue of a pre-made product. I have a big enough problem when people mix in various products with perfectly good wine, now you are going to do that for me?

Nonetheless, I surveyed my samples on hand, realized I was getting a bit low, so I responded “sure” (or something equally mind-blowingly inane). Once the two bottles arrived, however, I started to have second thoughts. It looked like a bottle of wine, but it is called “Sangria” and comes with instructions:


Hmmmm. All of a sudden I was overcome with memories of my childhood: salt and pepper in the same shaker, microwaveable S’mores, and this abomination:


Peanut butter and jelly in the same freaking jar. Are we really that lazy as Americans?

Wait, don’t answer that.

So, here I was with a bottle of white and red pre-made Sangria staring me in the face and all I could thing about was the poor schmoe whose mother actually buys Smucker’s Goober Spread.


So I did what I normally do—nothing. I put it on the samples shelf and hoped they would go away.

They didn’t.

Then, a few days ago, I came home and it was blistering hot. It had to be over a hundred degrees with even more humidity. I was dying for something cold, with alcohol, and cold. Really cold (hence the repetition). The problem? I did not have the foresight to throw a rosé or even a Pinot Grigio in the fridge that morning.

So I became depressed—I had no desire to wait the requisite 30 minute freezer time for a bottle to chill. And then those words came back to me:


For years, I had ridiculed my relatives for adding ice to their “Chablis” but this was different—I could not be accused of being a hypocrite (I hate being called a hypocrite) since the instructions are right there on the bottle:


I grabbed a Tom Collins glass (at least what I think is a Tom Collins glass), threw in a bunch of ice cubes, grabbed the bottle of White Joya Sangria, gave a quick twist to the top, and poured.

My first impression?


I could only taste the heat of the alcohol—and I did not want any more heat. If I wanted more heat, I would move to Houston. Dejected, I put the rest of the bottle in the fridge, left the glass in the kitchen, threw a Sancerre rosé in the freezer, and went upstairs to change.

I came down several minutes later and instinctively picked up the Tom Collins glass of half-melted cubes and drank.


That’s interesting.


Dare I say…


IMG_4344On top of that it was refreshing—really refreshing. I bounced over to the fridge and retrieved the now slightly chilled bottle of Sangria, added a few more cubes, poured, swirled a bit, and drank.


I have to say I really liked it—it was by no means introspective or even intriguing, but it really hit the spot on that hot afternoon. Since that revelation, I have been having a glass every day—I even look forward to it! It’s fruity, just a bit of alcohol (12%), and oh so cold.

The key? Despite the directions to:


for me, the key is to also chill the “Sangria” as the colder it gets, the more refreshing and fruity it seems to become.

JoyaJoya White Sangria has notes of lemon, grapefruit, and peach while the Joya Red Sangria was more plum and blueberry so I imagine throwing any of those fruits in with the ice would not be construed as a bad idea. Except by me: Joya Sangria is just fine on its own (as long as it’s cold), but people hear “Sangria” and they immediately think that they need to throw an entire fruit salad in with the wine. Personally, I don’t like flotillas in my beverages and the ice is already there–why add any more choking hazards?

Yeah, I know, I’m complicated.

Joya Sangria ($13), however, is not:

JUST ADD ICE (and make sure the bottle is chilled).




About the drunken cyclist

I have been an occasional cycling tour guide in Europe for the past 20 years, visiting most of the wine regions of France. Through this "job" I developed a love for wine and the stories that often accompany the pulling of a cork. I live in Houston with my lovely wife and two wonderful sons.
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23 Responses to Joya Sangria

  1. okiewinegirl2015 says:

    Hilarious! Might try it now. . . the Goober reminded me of Brian Reagan’s schtick here:

    Happy Wednesday!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kristy says:

    Ah Goober! Truly an abomination. I’ll be laughing about that grossness all day. Like you I don’t drink much beer (an occasional Corona, but my dad says that’s not real beer because it’s served with fruit), rarely a cocktail and I’m not one for mixing things with wine. I have a bottle of Sangria at home that I’ve been avoiding for some time. Maybe I’ll give it a shot before the weather turns. This gives me a little hope…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Beth says:

    It’s a times like this that I am glad I’m a craft beer gal, too. However, I am really glad to hear that the Sangria hit the spot. You are a funny guy. I’m imagining the day you tag me in a Sangria photo. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Gotta get going on those wine-based cocktails to see if I can elicit a Drunken Cyclist rant!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. SAHMmelier says:

    I wasn’t here when they sent the samples. Are you saying I should accept the offer to send it? I was skeptical as it is a rare occasion (party on a hot day) when I may want sangria.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. alisonmarriott says:

    I’m hugely skeptical of pre-made sangria (and regular sangria only happens once in a blue moon!), but if it passed your test….Also WHY are you chilling your bottles in the freezer?! Ice bath, Ice bath, Ice bath!


    • I was a skeptic as well, but it turned me around. As for the ice, I saw your post, but I disagree that it is the best way–it might be faster, but it is a huge energy waster, which is why I don’t do it.


  7. Ha! Had to smile at this post, as I still remember begging my mother as a child in the supermarket to let me try Goober-Grape, only to find myself disenchanted with it on my very first bite. I’ll have to try Joya, as I’ve only tried one other bottled ready-to-drink sangria (that I quite enjoyed.) As for booze before noon, that is frequently how I roll (at least on weekends. Having said that, it is entirely possible that I may have a problem…)


    • So what happened to the rest of the Goober-Grape? Did she make you eat it, or did you throw it out?

      Well, we apparently both have the same problem–I vote it is no longer considered a problem–you with me?


  8. Until I read this point I had never, ever heard of anyone combining salt and pepper together. I should not be as surprised by this as I am.


  9. Nice. I may have been swayed to actually give this stuff a whirl. Can’t remember being that hot though.

    Liked by 1 person

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