Last year, I wrote about being in the vineyards, photographing Hispanic workers during harvest. It was called, “All Hail Cinco de Mayo!” I’m so thankful that I’ve been able to work with this passionate group of people. Although an outsider, I still love Cinco de Mayo.

This year, I was approached by Tricia Rallis of Lisa Lori Communications. Tricia wanted to introduce me to 1800® Reposado Tequila and Folorari Shiraz. (For more details on this wine, follow the link and visit the Frederick Wildman & Sons site. Then use their drop down menu.)

This sounded and looked like too delicious an opportunity to pass up. So, I said, “Bring it on!”

My husband Jose and son-in-law-to-be Hasan were going to be watching the Warriors versus the Dallas Mavericks in the first round of the play offs together. I thought… “Okay… Captive audience. I’ll bring in the food, I’ll make the beverages, and let’s see where this goes.”

What a hit… This is a great Cinco de Mayo moment, and this beverage will NOT disappoint. Now… I made the first round of Cactus Berry Cocktails, and they got it into their heads that they wanted to put the next round through the blender. That wasn’t a hit… The following recipe provided by Tricia ¡Es muy fabuloso! Blending it, ¡No es muy fabuloso!… Es “so-so”…

JO: This beverage, after tasting it before I served it, struck me as a great summer season opener beverage, besides the Cinco de Mayo appeal. The Folonari Shiraz opened with delicious smoky notes, and finished with medium to broad flavors that were very welcoming, but not over-powering. I believe this is a perfect wine complement to this beverage, because it didn’t take over (which was an initial concern of mine). Cinco Sombreros on the sombrero scale of Uno a Cinco.

HASAN: Mellow and inviting, warm, South America Sangria, Sweet to Make!

JOSE: Smooth, fruity, refreshing, summer beach drink, margarita with a kick, don’t blend!

Here’s the recipe that I followed, and may all of your Cinco de Mayo’s be this tasty! Cheers!

Cactus Berry Cocktail

A fruit forward twist on the margarita.

1 oz 1800® Reposado
3 oz Folonari Shiraz
1 oz Cointreau
2 oz Sour Mix
1 oz Lemon-Lime soda (ie. Sprite)
Splash Lime Juice

Combine all the ingredients except for Lemon-Lime soda in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and pour into a cocktail glass (tall pilsner or pint glass). Top with Lemon-Lime soda. Garnish with a salted rim and slice of lime.