Are you looking for a list of the top must-try drinks from Spain? Look no further than this guide where we outline the 10 best drinks of Spain that you simply have to sample when visiting the country!
There’s no doubt that Spain is a glorious holiday destination that you should visit at least once in your lifetime. From the incredible Spanish landmarks, festivals, foods, nature, history, and culture, there’s just so much to explore, experience, and enjoy!
Whether you’re visiting vibrant Barcelona for a few days or heading south to Seville or Frigiliana, or plan to explore the myriad of brilliant Spanish hidden gems, one thing is for sure, you definitely have to sample at least a few of these drinks from Spain outlined in this list.
Regardless if you prefer to sample some Spanish alcoholic drinks, or prefer non-alcoholic, we have some top suggestions for you. In this post, I’ve collaborated with my fellow travel bloggers to bring you a selection of the 10 best drinks of Spain to try out. Salud!
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- Lastly, don’t forget about travel insurance for your trip!
Pssst…Ready to travel, check out our comprehensive packing list for your holiday to Spain, and make sure you’ve packed everything you need for your Spanish move or vacay!
Wine & Wine Based Drinks
By Melissa from Parenthood and Passports
Sangria is one of the most popular drinks in Spain. This sweet, chilled punch is made with red wine, chopped fruit, spices and spirits. Sipping on this refreshing beverage during Spain’s hot afternoons should be on everyone’s Spain bucket list.
The taste of sangria can vary depending on how it’s made and what is mixed with the red wine. But in general, sangria has a complex flavour that is both sweet and fruity as well as tart and bitter.
While it is popular across Spain and even Portugal, Sangria originated from the Rioja region of northern Spain, where Tempranillo grapes are grown for the purpose of winemaking.
The Spanish drink dates back to the Middle Ages, but it wasn’t until 1964 that it was introduced to the rest of the planet at the World’s Fair in New York City, where it was an instant hit.
Nowadays, Sangria is served in a variety of ways. Some restaurants might make it with white wine, rosé, or even sparkling wine. Others even serve it frozen. Regardless of how it’s prepared or mixed with, Sangria is a beloved Spanish beverage and makes for a perfect patio drink during the hot summer months.
Sherry – Drinks from Spain
By Isobel from The Gap Decaders
Sherry may have an old-fashioned reputation, but it is the national drink of Spain and has become more understood and enjoyed across Europe in recent years. No longer the drink of grandmothers, this fortified wine, which has been made in Spain since 1231, is a complex and unique tipple.
Sherry can only be called such when it’s made in the ’sherry triangle’ or Denominacion de Origin which is located in the province of Cádiz in the region of Andalucia in southern Spain. The cities of Jerez de la Frontera, Sanlúcar de Barrameda, and El Puerto de Santa María are at the corners of the triangle, with Jerez being the capital of sherry production.
Sherry is actually a generic term for aged white wine made in the DO Jerez – ask for sherry in Spain and you’ll get a blank look! You have to ask for the type you want by name. There are seven types of sherry – Fino is the driest, then Manzanilla, Amontillado and Oloroso, before moving to the sweeter end of the spectrum of Palo Cortado, Cream Sherry and the deliciously sticky Pedro Ximenez.
All sherry is made from three grapes – Palomino, Moscatel and Pedro Ximenez – using the solera y criadera system. Solera is a process that ages the wine by blending so that the finished product is a mix of ages and each glass contains a little bit of Spanish history. Make sure to visit a bodega and see the fascinating process in action when you’re visiting Spain.
Tinto de Verano
By Alison from Alison in Andalucia
There is nothing more quintessentially Spanish than sitting in the sun with a glass of tinto de verano, one of the most refreshing traditional Spanish drinks to enjoy in the summertime.
Literally translated as ‘summer red wine’, a tinto de verano is an equal mix of red wine and “gaseosa” (a Spanish fizzy drink similar to Sprite or 7 Up), poured over ice cubes with a few slices of lemon added.
With summer temperatures in inland Andalucia frequently reaching over 40°C, it’s probably no surprise that tinto de verano originates from Cordoba, where it was created in the 1920s by the owner of Venta de Vargas as a refreshing drink for his patrons.
Its popularity grew during the 1960s with the boom in package holidays to Spain and, nowadays, you’ll find tinto de verano served in bars throughout the country where it can be enjoyed either as an aperitif or as an accompaniment to some delicious tapas. You’ll also find it in bottles in Spanish supermarkets but it’s easy to make yourself at home (and the pre-mixed version never tastes as good as home-made).
Unlike sangria, which is mostly drunk by tourists to Spain, tinto de verano is a much lighter and fresher drink (although it still packs a punch if you enjoy a few too many!).
By Stéphanie from Bey Of Travel
One of the best drinks in Spain is a typical sweet red drink, called Vermouth, or Vermut in Spanish.
When wandering down the streets of Madrid or Barcelona, you will see plenty of people sipping a Vermouth classically served on the rocks or with a bit of soda water. This Spanish liquor / spirit (although technically it is considered a fortified wine) finds its roots in France and Italy back in the 18th century and was well known for its medicinal qualities. The Italians introduced Vermouth in the Catalonian town of Reus.
The best Vermouth comes from the tap (not from a bottle), most Spanish bars will brew it themselves. The spirit is a mixture of white wine infused with spices, botanicals, bitters, citrus, and caramel. The vermouth is an aperitive to help create an appetite.
One of the most famous Spanish Vermouth brands is Martínez Lacuesta Reserva. The brand was invented in 1930 by the brothers Martinez Lacuesta. They produce the spirit in a small Spanish town, called Haro. By adding 24 plants and spices to the white wine, they created a sweet, oaky Vermouth you absolutely need to try when in Spain.
By Victoria from Guide Your Travel
Veterano is one of Spain’s most iconic drinks. It’s produced by Osborne, a family-owned company that has been producing spirits for more than 250 years. You might recognise the iconic logo of Osborne Veterano. It’s a black bull that has become one of the most famous emblems of Spain. Especially in the south, you’ll spot quite a few giant bull statues or billboards which have become tourist attractions.
Veterano is a type of brandy that has enjoyed worldwide fame in the past years. It’s often served over ice or sometimes also in mixed drinks. It’s definitely an evening drink and often enjoyed after dinner with a group of friends.
This Spanish alcohol can be dated back to 1922 and is produced in a specific way that makes it unique from other brandies. Classic Veterano is arguably the best but it also exists in other flavours such as caramel and orange. A bottle typically costs between 8€ and 10€ so it’s an affordable spirit.
You can visit the bodegas Osborne which are located just south of Madrid. It’s a great experience to visit the grounds which are stunningly beautiful. You can learn all about the production process and try Veterano in a special tasting.
Água de Valência
By Laura from Travelers Universe
If you visit Valencia, you should definitely try Agua de Valencia, another of the best drinks from Spain to try out. And no, I definitely don’t mean drinking tap water.
Agua de Valencia is a popular local cocktail made with cava (Spanish sparkling wine), freshly squeezed orange juice made from sweet Valencian oranges, vodka, and gin. It is somewhat reminiscent of a mimosa, served in jugs for two or four people, and sipped from wide cocktail glasses.
Agua de Valencia can be ordered in many bars around the city centre of Valencia. It was first served in 1959, when a group of Basque travellers, challenged the manager of Café Madrid in Valencia, to invent an original drink. Since the manager was the famous Spanish painter Constante Gil and hence a highly creative person, he came up with Agua de Valencia.
In the meantime, this delicious cocktail has gained a lot of popularity and is worthy of any list of foods to try in Valencia. You can still sample this Spanish drink at Café Madrid (recently reopened), or you can enjoy it on a terrace such as that of Café de las Horas or Café Infanta in El Carmen neighbourhood, among others.
By JB from Will Fly For Food
Carajillo refers to a type of hot coffee drink spiked with liquor. It’s a popular drink in Spain and several countries in Latin America where it can be made with different types of spirits.
According to legend, Carajillo was invented in Cuba, when Cuba was still a province of Spain. Cuban troops would add rum to their coffee to give them courage. In fact, the name of the drink is derived from the Spanish word coraje, meaning “courage”. It was later changed to its diminutive form corajillo, before becoming Carajillo. In Catalan, it’s known as cigaló.
Recipes for Carajillo vary depending on where it’s made. In Cuba, it continues to be made with rum. In Colombia, it’s made with brandy while in Mexico, it can be made with Licor 43, mescal, or a coffee liqueur like Kahlúa.
In Spain, preparations for Carajillo vary from region to region. In Catalonia, it’s typically made by mixing three parts coffee with one part brandy and serving it with a side of sugar to taste. In Castellón, the alcohol is often heated and partially burned first with coffee beans, sugar, cinnamon, and a lemon rind before being added to the coffee.
No matter where or how you have it, Carajillo is a robust and potent brew that makes for an excellent after-meal digestive in Spain.
Rebujito – Spain Cocktails
By Agnes from The Van Escape
Rebujito is a refreshing Sherry cocktail invented in Andalusia, and it’s most popular in Seville and Jerez. It combines Sherry, a fortified Spanish wine, and soft drinks, usually white lemonade or lemon-lime soda. It is a refreshing citrus punch with sweet and sour flavours, perfect for summers days. What’s important is it’s easy to make, and it’s a budget cocktail. So, it’s a great solution for a party or gathering.
In Andalusia every spring in April they have famous fiestas, “Feria de Abril”, in Seville and the “Feria del Caballo” in Jerez. The Jerez region near Sevilla produces much of Spain’s sherry, and that’s why Rebujito made from this sherry is such a famed cocktail at these festivals.
The most important and biggest fiesta is the Seville Fair “Feria de Abril de Sevilla.” The fair generally begins two weeks after the Semana Santa, or Easter Holy Week and definitely one of the top things to do in Seville.
Each day the fiesta begins with the parade of carriages and riders, carrying Seville’s citizens to the bullring, La Real Maestranza, where the bullfighters and breeders meet. Then they meet at the vast area on the far bank of the Guadalquivir River, which is covered in rows of “casetas” – individually decorated tents.
In those elegant tents decorated with garlands, people are dancing the Sevillanas. It is folk music and dance derived from the Seguidilla, old Castilian folk music, and dance genre. Feria de Abril is a time of socializing and having fun.
But high temperatures, long dresses with ruffles, elegant suits, and dances make people thirsty. As a result of the fiesta lasting a whole week, the refreshing Rebujito drink was invented. You can drink a lot of it without worrying about a headache the next day.
Sidra from Asturias
By Talek from Travels With Talek
Asturias is a region of northern Spain with a reputation for natural beauty, history and great food and drinks. One of these drinks from Spain is the famous Spanish alcoholic beverage known as “sidra” a popular lightly alcoholic apple cider drunk throughout northern Spain from Galicia to the Basque region. Drinking sidra is considered more a cultural affirmation than a thirst quencher.
The best place to have a refreshing sidra in northern Spain is the Asturian capital city of Oviedo, an ancient town that was once the home of Asturian royalty. It is in Oviedo where the drink is enjoyed throughout the town in a way that might surprise many visitors. There is even a street in Oviedo known as sidra street where the restaurants compete to see who offers the best local cuisine.
In all the restaurants and bars, sidra is served from bottles poured about three feet above the glass so that the liquid will aerate. It’s hard to believe that the waiters can pour sidra from such a distance without missing a drop!
If you want to experience an ideal, traditional Asturian musical and culinary evening, head to Gascona Street. There are dozens of traditional restaurants on both sides of the street offering classic regional dishes accompanied by sidra. Musicians will arrive to play and waiters will pour sidra until the patrons join in singing the traditional songs. It is the Spanish equivalent of a rip-roaring good time.
Non-Alcoholic Spanish Drinks
By Paulina from Visit Southern Spain
Horchata is one of the most popular beverages in Spain. Do not misinterpret Mexican Horchata with Horchata de Chufa (from Valencia). Horchata from Mexico has a rice milk base, whereas Horchata de Chufa (often recognized as just Horchata) is created with a unique tuber named chufa. You may have heard of popular Spanish soup recipes, but Horchata is something special you must try.
Chufa, also known as tiger nuts or earth almonds, are sweet and tart and provide a soft almond and hazelnut flavour. Chufa is mostly harvested only in Valencia, Spain, and that is why Horchata is often available only in Spain.
It is a popular Spanish drink, originated in Valencia. Other parts where this drink is popular are Andalucia and Murcia. It was initially introduced in North Africa around 2400 B.C. In the 8th century, the Moors then brought Horchata to West Africa and Spain. Horchata eventually became a popular drink in Spain for its health benefits.
This delicious drink is made ready to drink by soaking chufas in cold water for a day. Then they are pound to a pulp to take out their milky juice. If you have consumed almond or soy milk, you will be able to resemble Horchata’s texture to these milk kinds. But it has a unique taste. People keep Horchata in the fridge for a while and serve it extremely cold. It is considered a healthy alternative to ice cream in Spain. You can serve it with buns called Fartons, a must-try when visiting Valencia and sampling some of the best dishes from Valencia.