10 Wine Cocktails to Get Happy Hour Started Right

When planning a Soiree, opting for a traditional mixed drink, wine, or both is natural. But did you know that you can combine the two?

Making cocktails with wine is not a new thing, in fact, some of the recipes on our list have been around for one hundred years or more. 

Keep reading for some of the best, easy-to-make wine cocktails that are sure to impress your friends and won’t break the bank.

Sangria Wine Cocktail

Wine Cocktail Recipes

You don’t need to be a mixologist to craft the best-tasting sippers. We’ve compiled a list of the top ten classic and unique wine cocktail recipes that are delicious and refreshing.

1. White Wine Spritzer

One of the easiest recipes to impress your guests is a white wine spritzer, which requires just two ingredients. Grab an aromatic wine like Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, or Gewürztraminer and add club soda. If you’d like a little extra flavor, add bitters or a lemon or lime twist. Throw in a few ice cubes, and you have a fancy, low-cost cocktail that tastes delicious.

2. Sangria 

A sweet and delicious summer treat, Sangria recipes are a classic for a reason. All you need is an equal amount of red wine and brandy mixed with fresh squeezed orange juice and granulated sugar. Add orange slices and apples for an extra fruity taste. You can also add a little soda water or ginger ale if prefer your Sangria on the bubbly side. 

If you prefer white wine cocktails, swap out the red wine for a dry white wine, and add mangos, peaches, seltzer, sugar, and orange liqueur for a lighter twist on the classic Sangria. 

3. St. Germain

If you like sweet and floral mixed drinks on the low-alcohol side, St. Germain keeps it simple with sparkling wine, soda water, and a celery rib or cucumber slice for an added garnish. Brut sparkling wines like Champagne, Cava, or Prosecco are some of the most popular choices for this recipe. 

4. Aperol Spritz

Similar to the St. Germain, with a little extra punch, an Aperol Spritz calls for Prosecco, Aperol, a splash of soda water, and an orange slice for serving. If you’ve not heard of the unique Italian aperitif that is Aperol, you’re not alone, as it’s not super common in American households. Essentially, it’s a bittersweet liqueur made from rhubarb, gentian root, and cinchona bark. It makes for a delicious kick in this refreshing wine-based cocktail.

5. Kir Royale

Traditionally served in a flute glass, the Kir Royale is a French cocktail consisting of Crème de Cassis and Champagne. Crème de Cassis is a sweet dark liqueur made from blackcurrants, so it adds a nice fruity twist to classic French sparkling wine. This lovely sipper dates back to 1904 at Café George in Dijon, France.

6. French 75

For something tried and true, the French 75 is believed to have originated in 1915 at the New York Bar in Paris. It’s just as classic as an Old-Fashioned Margherita, but its key ingredient of Champagne is what sets it apart from the aforementioned mixed drinks. Add fresh lemon juice or lime juice, simple syrup, Champagne, and a lemon peel for garnish, and you have an elegant French 75. 

7. Mulled Wine

If you’ve ever visited a Christmas market in Europe, it’s likely you've seen an abundance of the traditional German holiday drink, Mulled Wine (or Glühwein in German). Served hot or warm, this cozy cocktail combines red wine with mulling spices, cinnamon, brandy, a hint of sugar, and fresh orange slices with cinnamon sticks for an added garnish. Some versions contain raisins or even a splash of Vodka for a spiked variation. 

This European favorite is also older than you might think, as it dates back to the Romans and was even found in an English recipe book in the 1390s. 

8. Classic Mimosa

The quintessential brunch sipper, the classic Mimosa is a go-to if you love a sweet wine drink. Add chilled Champagne or other white sparkling wine like Prosecco or Cava to fresh squeezed orange juice, and you’re set. For a bolder orange flavor, add a dash of orange liqueur and a lemon slice for garnish.

9. Americano

You might be surprised to find that a sophisticated wine-mixed drink like the classic Americano can be crafted with just three ingredients. All you need is Campari, sweet vermouth, club soda, and an orange slice if you prefer a garnish. Campari is an Italian bitter characterized by its vibrant red color and sweet, fruity taste, making it a great match for vermouth, which is a popular mixer in several classic cocktails. 

10. Kalimotxo

For an incredibly unique red wine cocktail, the Kalimotxo has created a buzz all over Spain. Simply mix red wine with Mexican coke, then add a garnish like an orange slice or mint. It may sound odd to combine a wine with a soft drink, but this cocktail has been a classic in Spain since the 1920s, so it must be good.  

Rosé wine cocktails

Use These Wine Recipes to Get Your Party Started!

Now that you have several choices of red wine and white wine drinks at your fingertips for happy hour, it’s time to get crafting. 

The great thing about these recipes is that they’re simple, easy to make, budget-friendly, and effortlessly fancy. 

Shop all wines at our wine shop for an array of premium, affordable options you can use for your next cocktail party.

For more recipes and deep dives on all your favorite wines, check out the Wine Blog.