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1. For the syrup, in a medium saucepan* combine 2 cups of the berries, the sugar, water, and a dash of salt. Bring to boiling; reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; cool slightly. Strain through a colander, pressing gently without crushing the fruit; discard berries. Cool syrup.
2. For sangria, in a gallon jar or pitcher combine the blackberry syrup, rose wine, cognac, lemon juice, fruit, and a few sprigs of basil, if desired. Cover and refrigerate 4 to 24 hours.
3. Serve with ice, additional fruit, and basil. Makes 13 cups (26, four-oz. servings).