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Posted by on Dec 16, 2013 in infused | 0 comments

calimocho con canela

calimocho con canela


The classic calimocho – cheap, red wine and Coke – originated in the Basque region of Spain, where it is popular among young drinkers because of its simplicity and low cost. My semester in Pamplona (which sits just outside of the Basque region) while I was in college afforded me plenty of opportunities to familiarize myself with cheap Spanish red wine, and this concoction definitely makes it more appealing. But could it be elevated to a party-worth cocktail you’d serve your friends?

Almost no calimocho recipe will specify the type of red wine, except in a few instances, where it may say “the cheaper the better.” It makes sense that you would not want to use that $70 bottle of fine wine for an application like this. That is not how I would elevate a cocktail whose popularity is a direct result of its low cost and humble contents, and whose primary purpose is to get young Spaniards drunk. But could we give it a little more complexity and sophistication?

When I think of red wine, for some reason I think of cinnamon (canela in Spanish). This infusion lends a nice little spice to this simple cocktail. It requires a little planning ahead, and it’s a little unorthodox, but the significant flavor boost is worth it.

calimocho con canela

1 750-ml bottle of cheap red wine
2 12-ounce bottles of Coca-Cola (I prefer Mexican Coke because it has real sugar, and I think it tastes better)
6 cinnamon sticks

Put the cinnamon sticks in the wine, seal and refrigerate overnight. Just before serving, pour the wine and cold Coke into six glasses with ice. Place a cinnamon stick in each glass when serving the beverage, if desired. Makes six 8-ounce calimochos. (To make any quantity of servings, just keep the 1:1 ratio, and use one cinnamon stick per serving.)

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