Curious Small Sip 42: Mulled Wine

Mulled Wine

Mulled wine, or spiced wine, or gluhwein, or glögg, gløgg and glögi (Nordic names, not the sound of drinking it) is a popular festive hot drink made from wine, sugar and a pile of spices. Maybe also some citrus rind, but that seems to be a recent thing.

It is often served at Christmas markets in Europe. Our advice: drink mulled wine after you’ve made all your market purchases, not before.

The first recorded reference to heated spiced wine is in a play written by a 2nd century BC Roman playwright called Plautus. Popular theory is that Romans introduced wine (regular and mulled) across Europe.

If you’d like to make your own mulled wine this Christmas, try this recipe:

Buy a bottle of red wine from us.

At this point, you’re pretty much done, as far as we’re concerned, but here’s the rest of the recipe, just in case:

  1. Have a look in the kitchen cupboard for all those fancy spices you bought but never used: star anise, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, cardamom, ginger, all that sort of craic. Also grab a big heap of sugar.
  2. Put the wine, sugar and spices into a pan.
  3. Heat gently. Don’t, whatever you do, boil the bejayzus out of it. If the wine is steaming, that’s hot enough. Ten minutes should do.
  4. Let the wine cool and stand for a while, so the spices can infuse.
  5. Reheat.
  6. Drink.
  7. Realise you really overdid it on the spices.

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