Mulled wine has been enjoyed for thousands of years and is traditionally drunk in winter around Christmas. It is usually made from red wine, although white wine can be used, and it is combined with a range of spices and served warm.
Mulled wine is the perfect tipple to enjoy with friends or family, especially when it’s cold outside. Try serving it with a warm mince pie, roasted chestnuts or seasonal dried fruit to really make the most of it.
Ideally, mulled wine should be made from a wine which isn’t oaked, as oaked flavours can overpower the flavour of the added spices. It is best not to pick a really cheap wine, as heating it won’t make it taste any better. On the other hand, don’t pick your most expensive bottle of wine, as the additional spices will prevent you from tasting the natural flavours in the wine. The best option is to go for a wine that you would happily drink at room temperature.
There are loads of variations of Mulled Wine, so it’s always good to experiment to find a recipe which suits you. However, here is one of our favourite recipes to help get you in the mood this Christmas. (Just remember to stock up with some red wine in advance!)
Traditional Mulled Wine
1 x 75cl bottle of Red Wine
2 x lemons
2 x oranges
4 x large cinnamon sticks
Cloves (to taste)
Nutmeg (to taste)
1 x cup (250 ml) white granulated sugar
1 x cup of water or herbal/citrus flavoured tea
Brandy or Cognac (optional)
Instructions for making 4 large servings:
# Cut lemons and oranges into slices
# Pour the red wine into a saucepan and gradually heat
# Add the fruit slices, nutmeg, cloves (and brandy)
# Cover the saucepan with a lid
# Stir occasionally
# Wait until it becomes hot to the touch – never let the wine boil as this destroys the flavour of the spices
# At this point blend in sugar and water/herbal tea and stir in well
# Strain and pour into glasses/mugs
# Garnish with cinnamon stick and serve with mince pies
Microwaving: You can also microwave if you’re in a rush, or just want 1 or 2 glasses. Simply pre-mix the ingredients in a bowl, pour into a glass/mug, and microwave for 20 seconds on high – repeat twice more for a total of 60 seconds to ensure the mulled wine doesn’t reach boiling point.
Please be careful that the contents are not too hot before drinking it.