2024 – Summer tint


The time has finally come. The weather is beautiful, it's warm and we all can't wait to enjoy it! What are we serving our guests this summer? Tinto de verano, friends!

What? Tinto de verano, literally summer red, is a beautiful and simple blend that comes straight from Andalusia that Quebec should finally and joyfully succumb to. Why is that? Because the result is light, thirst-quenching and just festive enough, exactly what we want from a perfect little summer cocktail.

We are not the only ones saying this. Last year New York Times declared: “It's not summer without a Tinto de Verano” (“It's not summer without a little light summer red wine”, free translation). Even better: The recipe went viral and was one of the most popular of the year in the prestigious American daily newspaper.

And for good reason: it doesn't get much easier than this. Forget sangria (sweet and fruity), think simplicity and efficiency here. You probably even have everything you need on hand to make yourself a small glass right away: a little red wine (ideally Spanish and sweet, the bottom of the bottle, don't waste your good wine on that!), a lemon soda (Sprite, 7 Up, why not a homemade sparkling water to be fancy!), lots of ice cubes, and that's it! Try it and see for yourself, you might be (positively) surprised. And you'll understand why the sparkling liquid literally floods the terraces of Spain and is just begging to do the same here.

“It's very popular in Spain in the summer!” confirms Haissam Souki Tamayo, chef of the Ibericos restaurant in Montreal, a lovely address on Rue Saint-Denis that seems to have come straight from Barcelona and that offers a good Tinto de Verano on the menu, between Negroni and Sangria. “It's going well,” he says when we meet him on his newly built terrace on a beautiful afternoon.


Haissam Souki Tamayo, chef of the Ibericos restaurant in Montreal

When you sit on a terrace on the first day of summer, you don't want to drink what you've been drinking all winter! It's summer!

Haissam Souki Tamayo, head chef of the restaurant Ibericos

Note to those interested: Haissam Souki Tamayo will soon open an Ibericos cafe right above his restaurant in Plateau-Mont-Royal. Spanish-style, he promises to broadcast soccer matches and serve tintos de verano and other kalimotxos (calimoxwas? We'll get to that). The goal? To attract a younger, more festive clientele.

The little story

Because it is a fact that Tinto de Verano is, first and foremost, a drink for young people, among other things because it is economical. It is said that the mixture appeared at the beginning of the last century in the city of Córdoba, in Andalusia. Specifically, in a bar owned by a certain Federico Vargas. It was hot, the alcohol flowed freely, but above all, the customers were thirsty. To quench the thirst of his world – which, according to this legend, was made up of young flamenco dancers and musicians – the man came up with the idea of ​​diluting his wine with soda (Fanta, Kas or others, history does not reveal). Thus was born Vargas, which was quickly renamed and is called, quite simply, Tinto de Verano., Summer red (light).

But it wasn't until the 1960s that the drink gained popularity and could be found on every terrace in the country. Since then, everyone has been using it and making it their own. Some regions swap red wine for vermouth. Others are a successful mix of the two. Today, you can even find it in cans!

“And it is really popular!” confirms Federico Rivas, whose Buvette Pompette, a Spanish neighborhood stall in La Petite-Patrie, offers two variations on its menu: in traditional Tinto (red), but also in an improved version (in our humble opinion), bianco ! A little white wine, a dash of grapefruit juice, mineral water and voilà! “It's that simple! And so delicious,” the co-owner of the pretty address on Rue Saint-Zotique tells us.


Federico Rivas from Buvette Pompette in Montreal

It must be easy: everyone in Spain has everything they need to do it in two seconds!

Federico Rivas from Buvette Pompette

If customers in his restaurant are “positively” surprised by the offer, “they buy more!” “And those who have traveled to Spain become nostalgic!” […] “It brings back memories of my youth,” adds our interviewee, whose father is Spanish and whose mother is from Quebec and who has spent many summers on the other side of the puddle.

Note that the cocktail also fits today's trends for lighter, less alcoholic and, above all, less sweet drinks. Whether red or white, “it's a cocktail that's not too sweet, not too alcoholic and not expensive,” he argues. “It's a wonderful summer cocktail for a terrace.” “And it's still festive. It's easy to share: you can make pitchers of it! »

Visit the Ibéricos website

Visit the Buvette Pompette website

A different taste, a different cocktail: Kalimotxo


Kalimotxo (in Basque or Calimocho in Spanish) is a mixture of red wine and Coca-Cola.

Equally simple, but perhaps a bit more surprising, is Kalimotxo (in Basque or Calimocho in Spanish), a mixture of red wine and Coca-Cola. You read that right, and you should try it, maybe adopt it! It is said that this drink was born in the 1970s in the Basque Country during a music festival. Legend has it that the organizers noticed that their red wine (bought in bulk) was diluted and came up with the idea of ​​diluting it with Coca-Cola to camouflage the bad taste. This is how the “ Cuba, the free land of the poor » (Free Cuba of the People), nicknamed “Kali” (reference to Kalimero), in reference to a seemingly unattractive waiter, “ Subscribe to » which in Basque means exactly “ugly”! “It’s a bit like the ancestor of Red Bull Vodka,” argues Federico Rivas. In the version the poor always: “You have the high from alcohol and the kick from cola!” »