At Los Arcos, they blend a fairly traditional Sangria: Red wine, of course, with liberal additions of fruit, usually limes, oranges, even cherries sometimes, and some brandy.

Sangria goes well with most Mexican food; it’s hard to rule out almost any pairing, from straight tacos to subtle mole sauces.

One fun thing about Sangria is that it lends itself to making it your own, to adding your own personal touch. A homemade batch is a wonderful thing to experiment with.

For a little fizz, try a Lambrusco, or a touch of sparkling water. For the wine, the best rule is to not use anything that you wouldn’t want to drink on its own. Doesn’t have to be anything truly outrageous, but a lousy red will still taste lousy mixed into a pitcher of Sangria. A plain brandy works marvelously, but a fruit flavored brandy can add some dimension.

As for proportions, think about a cup of brandy to a bottle of wine, and at least one cut-up fruit, although it’s better to go overboard on the fruit than to add too little. This is a pitcher of fun; adding a little bit of sugar and some lemon or lime juice only add to the good times that go along with Sangria.