Andrew Cross
REFERENCE IMAGE Firefly's Sangria
  1. Sangria is best when the fruit is allowed time to steep in the wine.
  2. Firefly was located in Las Vegas, NV

Once upon a time, Las Vegas’s Firefly Tapas Kitchen & Bar was a civic treasure. Their OpenTable reviews were spectacular, and many visitors considered their signature Firefly sangria to be the best they’d ever had. They got legitimate press coverage from the local newspaper as well. Then, in April of 2013, disaster stuck the establishment in the form of a salmonella outbreak that rendered 294 patrons ill.

I realize that the second half of that paragraph doesn’t exactly sell this recipe, but as long as you don’t slice the fruit with the same knife you previously diced pig crap with, you’ll be fine.

Firefly Sangria from the Kitchen

Let me first validate this recipe. It first came from a post on reddit. Ostensibly, from a former kitchen-worker that was familiar with the restaurant. The only problem was that the recipe was in Spanish. I don’t speak Spanish, but I happen to have plenty of friends that do! What follows is a friend’s translation.

20 liter of red wine
1.25 kilos of sugar
1 liter of Alize
10 apples
13 oranges
7 lemons

Empty the wine, add the sugar and mix well. Add Alize and slice/chop the fruit into 8 parts, add to the mix and let it sit for two days.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not planning on making, let alone drinking, 20 liters of wine any time soon. I also couldn’t find my 1.25 kilo measuring cup, so I converted the recipe to more useful proportions.

1.5 liters of red wine
1/2 cup of sugar
1/3 cup of Alize
3/4 of an apple
1 orange
1/2 of a lemon

Firefly Sangria from the Chef

Here’s where this gets a little interesting, though. I did some serious research, and actually managed to find the founding chef of Firefly giving a video lesson on how to make Firefly sangria!

Be sure to check out the original post at, but I wanted to make sure it was properly archived in case anything ever happens to their site. I want to make sure this recipe isn’t lost to Las Vegas lore!

Ingredients for Sangria

  1. 2 Apples
  2. 2 Oranges
  3. 250-300 ml or according to taste of Alize flavored brandy
  4. 1 bottle of any fruity red wine
  5. 1/2 cup sugar
  6. Ice

Work in “Real Time” to Make Sangria:

  • Get out a knife for chopping and a pitcher.
  • Ingredients from your pantry: Alize flavored brandy, fruity red wine, sugar.
  • Ingredients from your refrigerator: Apple, orange, ice.
  • Pre-prepare thin slices from the apple and orange.

Begin to prepare with Chef Simmons:

  1. Put the thinly sliced apple and orange into the pitcher.
  2. Pour the Alize in.
  3. Add sugar in.
  4. Pour red wine in.
  5. Mix sugar properly.
  6. Fill the pitcher with ice.

Note: If you stage the sangria outside for three or four days, take off the fruits and squeeze out as much juice as you can before serving.

To serve
Cut thin dices of apple and put it in the glass.

  1. Fill the glass with ice.
  2. Pour sangria.
  3. Put thinly cut slice of orange on the rim of the glass.

There you go! If you’ve done any riffing on this recipe, and feel like you have a better way of making Firefly sangria, let me know in the comments below!

Profile picture of Andrew standing at the Southern-most point in the United States.
Andrew Cross

Andrew is currently a mechanical R&D engineer for a medical imaging company. He enjoys good food, motivated people, and road biking. He has still not completely come to terms with the fact he will never play center field for the Kansas City Royals.