Cozy Christmas Traditions: Sipping Glühwein
There is nothing that welcomes your guests and says Christmas like soul-warming aromas of slowly simmering red wine with sliced oranges and mulling spices; cinnamon sticks, nutmeg and cloves, star anise, cardamom, and ginger.
Cozy choice of an après-ski treat mulled wine is a favorite drink in the ski huts across Europe. Glühwein or “glow-wine”, named after the hot irons once used for its mulling, is popular in German-speaking countries and also in French region of Alsace, right across the border. The tradition dates back to 1420 with noble families starting to grow first Riesling grapes, which can also be used in Glühwein along with Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc.
The tradition dates back to 1420 with noble families starting to grow first Riesling grapes, which can also be used in Glühwein along with Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc.
A slowly simmering pot of gluhwein makes the whole house smell inviting, festive and Christmassy.
Perfect for those nights by the fire, wrapping presents and enjoying the Spirit of the Holidays. It tastes like heaven, warms your tummy and your toes and is bound to make your cheeks glow.
Glühwein is an integral part of the European Christmas experience and commonly served at the famous Christmas market along with a variety of festive foods and treats. The best thing is, it’s super easy to make at home. And depending on your choice of wine, it can be relatively inexpensive to make in large quantities. My favorites are Portuguese reds vinified with port grapes at the fraction of the price you would pay for the actual Port.
So what is the best recipe? The secret is that there is no secret. Just pick your favorite wine and spices and taste and experiment until your signature “house style” emerges. You can also add brandy to fortify the drink and enhance its flavor.
The most important tip to remember is not to have it reach the boiling point, as it would burn the alcohol off. Gently simmering is all that’s required. After twenty minutes of gentle simmer, your very own mulled wine is ready. Serve it in a small glass mug and garnish with star anise and a fresh orange slice studded with cloves for a beautiful presentation and a fresh splash of citrus.
HAPPY & COZY CHRISTMAS TO ALL!!