My Aunt Paula loves to shop. My mom and I joke that I was supposed to be her daughter because we share a love of shopping that my own mother just can’t keep up with. And so, because I am at an age where I have at least one wedding to attend each season, I enlist Paula’s help in determining the wardrobe. Not only does she love to shop, but Paula subscribes to the very reasonable philosophy that you should always have two outfits for a wedding, one to wear and a backup one in the car… In case someone else is wearing the same thing.
Last year Paula and I spent nearly 8 hours scouring hundreds of stores looking for the perfect dress-shoes-clutch combo. Eventually we found the perfect summer cocktail dress, satin with spectacular bursts of color, and later the cutest (and most painful) pair of yellow spiked-heel sandals.
This year we didn’t shop for nearly as long, hit about the fraction of the stores, and found something even better. No, not the second most perfect summer cocktail dress (the days are slipping away and I still have no idea what I am going to wear on the 9th)…just the perfect cocktail.
California Pizza Kitchen is not normally in my repertoire of restaurants, but I had been craving their Buffalo Chicken Pizza, so Paula and I sought refuge there after a few hours of dress hunting. Their cocktail menu is pleasantly lengthy, and I decided on the Caribbean Sunset Sangria at the recommendation of the server. People, I almost fell out of my chair when I tried this drink. Not only is it delicious, but it is also 90% alcohol. Very dangerous. I knew I had to recreate it at home.
I’m sure there are former CPK bartenders out there who would be willing to share this ultra-secret recipe, but I sure couldn’t find anything close in an initial Google search. All I had were the ingredients listed in the menu and the memory of that fantastic drink. It only took me one attempt and a couple tweaks to find something exceptionally close, and that is what I am thrilled to be sharing with you today.
CPK Caribbean Sunset White Sangria
Inspired by California Pizza Kitchen
Makes 1 serving (I have yet to experiment with making more than one glass at a time)
2 tbsp mango puree
1/3 cup pinot grigio
1/4 cup Malibu Passion Fruit rum (I only had the normal kind, so don’t sweat it if that’s all you have too!)
1/4 cup peach schnapps
1/4 cup apple juice
Mix all ingredients in a shaker over ice. Shake it like a Polaroid picture. Strain and serve over more ice.