Latin Twist: Fun Fiesta Cocktails Part 2


Winters in Lima, Peru are, well, quite different from what we get up here in New York (or what we usually used to get!).  But still this Peruvian-born wine drink is as perfect on a chilly and damp winter’s day in Lima, as it is here! Fragrant and warming, this almost sangría-like cocktail is one that you will want to keep around for the holidays.  Ah, that reminds me: this one is from Mambo Mixers, which I’ll be signing and selling on SUNDAY DECEMBER 9th, at La Casa Azul Bookstore, on 103rd Street in NYC, from 2 to 5 pm! Should be a lovely crowd there—29 other local authors nuzzled in between a great collection of books for children and adults, in English and Spanish—and sometimes both! I’d love to see you there!

Back to Peruvian Winter Wine, what should you serve with this? Well, anything you’d like…but I recommend Brazilian Cheese Puffs (nice taste combo—and this is certainly what I’ll be offering my family on Christmas Day!). ¡Buen provecho! Enjoy!

Latin Twist: Fun Fiesta Cocktails Part 2

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Serving Size: 8

Latin Twist: Fun Fiesta Cocktails Part 2

Photo by Dasha Wright, from Mambo Mixers, by Arlen Gargagliano


  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar, or according to taste
  • Rind from 1 medium-size orange
  • Rind from 1 lemon, plus additional rinds for garnish
  • 4 cinnamon sticks, plus additional sticks for garnish
  • 12 cloves
  • 3 cups red wine (preferably a Chilean Cabernet)


  1. Fill a medium-size saucepan with the water, sugar, and orange and lemon rinds and bring to a boil.
  2. Add the four cinnamon sticks and the cloves.
  3. Lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. Strain into a thermos or heatproof pitcher.
  5. Add the wine and serve immediately in wine glasses garnished with additional lemon rinds and cinnamon sticks.
  6. Enjoy!



About Author

Maybe it was the dinner parties my mom always threw—or the hours I spent prepping and cooking alongside her (and then on my own!). Or maybe it was array of fabulous dishes that my family sampled in New York City’s richly diverse restaurants, but I’ve loved creating, savoring, and sharing food for as long as I can remember. Living in Spain, and later in Peru, also greatly influenced my life. These years abroad taught me Spanish—and about living in different countries--but also introduced me to teaching English as a second language, which I’ve done—mostly in the US-- for the past 20-plus (yikes!) years. I’ve authored two cocktail/tapas books, Mambo Mixers and Calypso Coolers, coauthored more than 15 others (mostly food related!), and raised two children. Now I'm chef and owner of my own restaurant, Mambo 64 in Tuckahoe, New York. My message is the same, whether I'm teaching, writing, running the restaurant or being a regular guest on the Spanish-language network Telemundo (on the morning show, Buenos Días Nueva York!). My belief in food—and the power of food—is far reaching, and is married with another one: the power of stories. I’m sure that if we could all sit down and have meals together, sharing both tastes and tales, we’d have peace on earth. Enjoy!

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