You know what’s weird? Being on your own for the first time ever. Going to the store and realizing you have to stock a fridge that’s totally empty. Coming home and confronting the fact that – hey! – you don’t have any leftovers ready to eat and you actually have to cook dinner after you’ve been GOGOGO alllll day. And pouring yourself a glass of wine because suddenly you’re a 23-year-old who actually comes home after work and wants wine – not beer, not hard alcohol, just wine. It’s like my private little happy hour and it really does make the day better.
That being said, I am still me and I do love making cocktails (again, am I actually 23?!), so I figured it was time to attempt one with red wine. That, and I had a bottle of Crios Red Blend sitting on my counter practically begging to be opened, new tonic water to try out, and a big bag of limes waiting to be used. Spritzer material? I think yesssss. Plus, you know what the inspirational message is for said red blend? “EXPLORE SOMETHING NEW”. This cocktail ➝ totally meant to be.
Now, I have to say, the wine makes the cocktail, and I ♡ this wine for so many reasons. Not only is the labeling completely on point (because don’t we all look for the pretty labels first?), but the flavor is exactly what I think a red wine should be – juicy and smooth, with all these intricate layers of richness and complexity. (For those of you who have much more sophisticated palates than me, you’ll taste notes of plum, black pepper, and blackberry jam, thanks to a perfectly balanced and inspired blend of wines – 40% Bonarda, 40% Malbec, 15% Tannat, and 5% Syrah.) And what I might love more than anything is the story behind the wine: it’s from a family-owned brand made by Susana Balbo, a leading winemaker in Argentina. The grapes are harvested in Mendoza and Salta, and Susana’s son and daughter now help her make the wine that she initially created as a tribute to them. Real talk for a second – family-owned brands are always amazing. This one’s no exception; their red blend is completely unique and makes for perfect happy hour drinking (and cocktail-making!).
The wine itself pairs really well with all these fantastic foods like BBQ chicken, grilled sausages, and smoked gouda, and as a spritzer, it’s even more versatile if anything. It’s still juicy and smooth, but with a little bit of added brightness and zing thanks to lime and tonic water – a cocktail that’s perfect for the transition between summer and fall. Crios also makes quite a few different varietals – Torrontés, Rosé of Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Malbec, so there’s a little something to go with just about every meal. You know what that means? On the best days you can take the time to mix one up in your own classy cocktail, and on the “Wine NOW” kind of days, you can pour it straight from the bottle and drink something every bit as luscious. Sound like a plan? Yeppp, I think so.
A cocktail that's perfect for red wine lovers, full of its rich, juicy flavors plus a little bit of sweetness and spritz.
- 4 ounces Crios Red Blend
- 1 1/2 ounces vodka
- 3/8 ounce simple syrup
- 1/2 ounce freshly-squeezed lime juice
- 2 ounces tonic water
- In a cocktail shaker, combine wine, vodka, simple syrup, and lime juice. Shake well and strain into a wine or lowball glass.
- Add tonic water and ice, stir briefly, and serve immediately.
*To make simple syrup, stir together 8 ounces (1 cup) water with 7 ounces (1 cup) granulated sugar in a saucepan set over medium heat. Heat, stirring occasionally, just until the sugar has dissolved into the water. Store in a jar or other airtight container in the refrigerator. This will make enough for several drinks.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.