How to use soda to upgrade your cocktail game

You can get spritzes when you visit Rome. Aperitifs are available in Paris. What to drink in Spain after the meal (and wine) are over?

While tourists sip sangria, Spaniards enjoy betas, refreshing mixed beverages that are simple to make and available in various flavors. Cuba is an abbreviation of Cuba libre. It is a mix of Coke and rum that was popularized following Cuba’s independence from Spain. Now, Kubota can be used to describe any mixed drink or highball. These drinks are also called cops due to the shape of their glasses or combinados, which refers to combined drinks. These alcohol-and-soda mixtures are the backbone of modern Spanish drinking.

Gin-tonic is the consummate Copa. You know everything about gin, tonic, and the 1:2 mixture of gin, syrupy industrial tonic water, lime juice, and baby cubes prone to melting. The Spanish gin-tonic has a unique art form. It is so precise that it would make Renaissance sculptors weep. The citrus peels are rubbed on the glass, leaving a light scent. Large, cylindrical ice cubes can resist the temptation to water down the drink.

Many of the most well-known Spanish mixed drinks are made from wine. Tinto de Verano is a mixture of red wine, lemon soda, and water that translates to “summer wine.” The kalimotxo, a red wine, Coca-Cola and a lemon twist, is its northern cousin. This drink was born in the 1970s Basque Country, and Coke later trademarked it. Rebujito is a refreshing summer drink made with fino sherry and lemon-lime soda. It comes from southern Spain. The base ingredients are the same: wine, a bubble soft drink, ice, and an aromatic garnish. However, the result is a mix of glasses that are pretty different and dangerously drinkable.

This is why these drinks are so simple. However, the secret to drinking success lies in the details. Make sure to stock up on slow-melting ice, Spanish liquor, wine, and quality mixers so you can start pouring at your next fiesta.

1. Tonic & Gin from Spain

Making a good gin and tonic in Spain is an art form. There are entire bars dedicated to this drink. Although the ingredients may look identical — gin and tonic with ice — the magic lies in the details, from the proportions (tonic-heavy) to the glass (think fishbowl).

2. Kalimotxo

This unlikely crowd-pleaser dates back to the 1970s in Northern Spain. It comprises young red wine, Coca-Cola, and a lemon twist. A group of friends in Bilbao invented it during a town festival. They combined the ingredients with a genius twist; the rest is history.

3. Rebujito

Rebujito is a Spanish drink that hails from the south. The local wine is fortified sherry, and the high temperatures demand something cool and refreshing. A sherry base is muddled with lemon-lime soda, mixed with mint, and served. This favorite local drink is a hit at local festivals.