Tinto de Verano (Spanish Red Wine Cocktail)

published Aug 19, 2023
Tinto de Verano Recipe

Loosely translating to "red wine of summer", this low-ABV cocktail is endlessly customizable and easy to make.


Prep5 minutes

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A photo of 2 glasses of red tinto de verano cocktails. The glass in the front is getting seltzer poured in.
Credit: Photo: Alex Lepe; Food Styling: Rachel Perlmutter

It gets hot in Spain, so folks start to order tinto de verano, a red wine-based drink, as soon as the temperature begins to rise. It’s a refreshing, low-ABV way to beat the heat. Go into almost any restaurant in Spain and order a “tinto” — the servers will know exactly what you mean.

What Is Tinto de Verano?

Tinto de verano is a Spanish wine-based drink that translates to “red wine of summer.” In Spain, it doesn’t traditionally need a recipe because there are only two ingredients: La Casera Limón, a citrus-based soda, and cold red wine, such as Tempranillo or Cabernet Sauvignon. 

The servers will ask you if you want “limón” or “blanca” when ordering. This refers to the type of soda: La Casera Limón or plain soda water. People who prefer less citrus flavor or less sugar, but still want effervescence, will order plain soda over Limón.

The drink can be served a few different ways. Oftentimes, the server will leave a large bottle of La Casera Limón soda and a chilled bottle of wine on the table so everyone can build their own.

Some people like more soda with a splash of wine and some folks prefer a ratio that’s closer to equal parts. More often than not, the server will serve the drinks pre-measured directly into the glass or serve it from a canned version.

In Spain, the drink is so popular that La Casera, the soda company, makes a pre-made canned beverage, with and without alcohol. The no-alcohol version has a delicious grape-forward flavor profile with bubbly lemon notes. While the alcohol version is made with Tempranillo, it has only 4.3% alcohol. 

Credit: Photo: Alex Lepe; Food Styling: Rachel Perlmutter

How to Make Tinto de Verano

When trying to recreate this same flavor profile in an American kitchen, the bright flavor profiles of American-based citrus sodas fall short in comparison to La Casera.

After attempting the beverage with every citrus soda available to me, the combination that got me close to the flavor profile of the version served in Spain is to blend Sprite with fresh lemon and lime juice.

No need for extra sweetener, as American sodas are sweet enough. (If you are able to get your hands on La Casera Limón, omit the citrus juice and just go with the two ingredients.)

If You’re Making Tinto de Verano, a Few Tips

Ratios are arbitrary for this beverage, but this recipe serves as a guideline for my favorite ratio. 

  • Be flexible with the wine. If you want less wine, use less wine. If you want more wine, add more. I also sometimes swap the red wine for white wine like Sauvignon Blanc. It’s equally delicious and refreshing; however, I wouldn’t call it tinto de verano. With white wine, it’s closer to another drink called “rebujito” that is prepared in a similar way; instead of cold red wine, it is traditionally served with dry white wine, such as Vino Blanco Manzanilla, Sprite, and lime juice. 
  • Try grape juice for a no-alcohol version. I encourage any folks who choose not to imbibe alcohol to try it with grape juice instead of wine.

Tinto de Verano Recipe

Loosely translating to "red wine of summer", this low-ABV cocktail is endlessly customizable and easy to make.

Prep time 5 minutes

Makes 4

Nutritional Info


  • 3

    medium limes

  • 2

    medium lemons

  • Ice

  • 1 1/3 cups

    cold dry red wine, such as tempranillo or cabernet sauvignon

  • 2 (12-ounce) cans

    cold citrus soda, such as La Casera, Lemon Fanta, Sprite, 7-Up, or club soda, plus more as needed

  • 4

    thinly sliced lemon or lime wheels


  1. If using La Casera soda, skip this step. Juice 3 medium limes until you have 1/3 cup. Juice 2 medium lemons until you have 1/4 cup. Place both juices in the same liquid measuring cup.

  2. Fill 4 (16-ounce) glasses with ice (about 3 ounces per glass). Pour 2 tablespoons citrus juice and 1/3 cup red wine into each glass.

  3. Pour 3/4 cup cold citrus soda or club soda into each glass and stir to combine. Taste and add more wine or soda as needed. Garnish each glass with a citrus wheel.