Adding grilled fruit to this sangría gives it a bit of smoky flavor that complements the red wine and brandy, but also mellows out the booziness. Citrus, apples, and grapes are grilled, then mixed into red wine, orange liqueur, brandy, and orange juice. The mix is then chilled and, right before serving, it’s topped off with sparkling wine for some extra pizazz. This easy-drinking cocktail makes a big batch, so serve it while tailgating or at a barbecue with a bunch of friends.
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (from about 2 oranges)
1 (750-milliliter) bottle dry sparkling wine, such as blanc de blancs, chilled
Thread all of the grapes onto the skewers; set aside. Meanwhile, heat a grill pan or outdoor grill to medium-high (about 375°F to 425°F).
Place the grape skewers, oranges, lemons, and apples on the grill, cover the grill, and cook until the fruit is just beginning to char and soften, about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Remove to a 6-quart container. When the grapes are cool enough to handle, remove them from the skewers.
Add the wine, brandy, orange liqueur, simple syrup, and orange juice to the container and stir to combine. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled and the flavors have melded, at least 6 hours.
When ready to serve, add the sparkling wine, stir gently to combine, and serve over ice, if desired.