Tinto de Verano: Spain’s Refreshing Summer Drink

Tinto de verano on a wooden table with a hatt, ice and fruit

Caption: Quench Your Thirst with Tinto de Verano: Spain's Favourite Summer Drink Image: Shutterstock/ Rimma Bondarenko

Tinto de Verano translating to ‘summer red (wine),’ this chilled, wine-based beverage is a classic that captures the essence of a Spanish summer. Similar to sangria, but with its own unique twist, Tinto de Verano combines red wine with soda and is served over ice. Let’s dive into the details of this popular drink and explore why it’s the go-to choice for beating the heat.

A bit of history…

Originating in the early 20th century, Tinto de Verano was born out of the inventive mind of Federico Vargas, who crafted a mix of red wine and soda pop for the patrons of Venta Vargas in Cordoba, Spain. Initially named “un Vargas,” this refreshing drink quickly gained popularity and became known as Tinto de Verano.

The classic debate: with Fanta lemon or soda water

The classic recipe for Tinto de Verano calls for equal parts table red wine and soda, commonly lemonade. Traditional brands of soda, or gaseosa, like La Casera, can be replicated by blending Sprite or 7-Up with carbonated water. Served over ice, this delightful beverage is often garnished with a slice of lemon or orange. Some prefer to add Fanta Lemon but that all depends on your taste. The debate over whether to use soda water or Fanta lemon in Tinto de Verano has sparked lively discussions among locals, each arguing for their preferred choice to achieve the perfect balance of flavours. How do you drink yours?

Tinto de Verano with fruit on a wooden table
The debate over whether to use soda water or Fanta lemon in Tinto de Verano has sparked lively discussions ! Image: Shutterstock/etorres

While the classic recipe stands firm, there are various exciting variations of Tinto de Verano to explore. For those seeking a little extra kick, rum can be added to the mix. Alternatively, you can experiment with different sodas such as orange soda, bitter lemon, or even cola, which gives rise to a concoction known as calimocho. Rosé wine can also be used as a base, combined with lemon or orange soda to create a refreshing twist. Vermouth is also a popular addition.

Tinto de Verano and Sangria what’s the difference?

Now, you may be wondering how Tinto de Verano differs from sangria, another Spanish wine-based beverage. While both drinks are red wine-based, sangria is a more complex concoction. It incorporates a variety of macerated fruits, along with additional ingredients such as brandy and sugar or simple syrup. Unlike Tinto de Verano, sangria does not traditionally include a soft drink. So, if you’re looking for a simpler, more refreshing option, Tinto de Verano is the way to go.

Tinto de Verano is synonymous with summer, making it the perfect choice for hot sunny days. Whether you’re sipping it as an aperitif or pairing it with tapas, Tinto de Verano is a versatile drink that can be enjoyed throughout the day. Salud!

Follow this video to make your own!https://www.youtube.com/shorts/yUCOF9lKfgg

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Written by

Catherine McGeer

I am an Irish writer who has been living in Spain for the past twenty years. My writing centers around the Costa Cálida. As a mother I also write about family life on the coast of Spain and every now and then I try to break down the world of Spanish politics!