Mulled wine is a classic Christmas cocktail that’s perfect for getting a crowd into the festive spirit. Mulled wine is a traditional drink which has been enjoyed in various forms since Roman times. Most Northern European countries have their own version of mulled wine: think gluhwein in Germany or glogg in Scandinavia.
In Britain, it wouldn’t be the Christmas season without mulled wine. Sure you can buy pre-mixed bottles these days, but making your own mulled wine recipe is so much nicer than buying a pre-prepared mix, not to mention much better value, too. The warming flavours from oranges, lemons, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg all combine to give homemade mulled wine its distinctive heady and fragrant taste.
Once you’ve mastered our classic cocktail recipe, you could try spiking your mulled wine with different berries, herbs and spices. If you want a particularly fruity flavour you could try frozen summer fruits, just make sure they’re thoroughly warmed through before you serve your mulled wine up to guests.
This mulled wine recipe is best made on the day, but that doesn’t mean you can’t prep ahead. Once you know you’re going to be making mulled wine for your Christmas party you can get going by portioning up your spices. Little muslin bags are perfect for this, and then you can just drop them straight into your wine when you’re ready to steep and serve your Christmas drinks. There’s no need to splash out on expensive wine as once you’ve added all those aromatic fruits and spices, even your biggest wine buff guests won’t be able to tell the supermarket-offer stuff from the Chateauneuf-du-Pape.
How To Make Mulled Wine
- 1 bottle red wine
- 1 orange, sliced
- 1 lemon, sliced
- 50g (2oz) Demerara sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 4 whole cloves
- grating nutmeg
- 2tbsp Grand Marnier or Cointreau
Place all the ingredients except the Grand Marnier or Cointreau in a saucepan with 300ml (1/2 pt) water. Heat gently until the sugar has dissolved. Taste to see whether it is sweet enough and add more sugar if desired.
Remove from the heat, add the Grand Marnier or Cointreau. Stir well, strain into heatproof glasses and serve immediately.