How to Make Mulled Wine for the Holidays

Mulled Wine is a delicious holiday drink that's been popular for centuries!

Mulled wine is a popular drink during the winter months, often associated with holiday festivities. Its history can be traced back to the Romans, who heated their wine with spices and honey to make a drink called “hippocras.”

During the Middle Ages, spices from the East were highly prized and often added to wine to create a warm and flavorful drink. These spices, such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, were believed to have medicinal properties and were used to treat a variety of ailments.

In the 16th century, the English added citrus to their wine, which they called “wassail.” The drink became popular at winter festivals and was often served in a large communal bowl.

In the 19th century, German and Austrian immigrants brought the tradition of mulled wine to the United States. The drink became especially popular during the Christmas season, and variations using red wine, white wine, and even beer began to emerge.

Today, mulled wine can be found at holiday markets and festivals around the world. It remains a beloved winter drink, enjoyed for its warmth and spice, and its association with the holiday season.

There are many appetizers that pair well with wine. Some tasty options include savory cheese and charcuterie platters, featuring a variety of cheeses, meats, and accompaniments such as fruit, nuts, and honey. Warm, crusty bread or baguette slices are also a great option for dipping into a bowl of mulled wine. Other appetizers that go well with wine include spiced nuts, olives, and roasted vegetables. For a sweet and indulgent treat, serve mini pastries or fruit tarts alongside a mug of warm mulled wine.

At Timber Hill we love to serve it in the tasting room this time of year! It is also a great addition to your Dome Reservation!

How to make mulled wine:

Throwback Thursday Wisconsin Wine with Mulling Spices

To make mulled wine, you will need:

         A bottle of red wine

         1/4 cup of honey or sugar

         1 orange, sliced

         2 cinnamon sticks

         4 whole cloves

         4 whole allspice berries

         4 cardamom pods

         2 star anise pods

        A small piece of ginger, peeled and sliced (optional)

  1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the red wine, honey or sugar, and sliced orange.
  2. Add the cinnamon sticks, cloves, allspice berries, cardamom pods, and star anise to the saucepan. If using ginger, add it at this time as well.
  3. Bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Do not let it boil.
  4. Reduce the heat to low and let the mulled wine simmer for about 30 minutes, or until it is hot and the flavors have melded together.
  5. Strain the mulled wine through a fine mesh sieve to remove the spices.
  6. Serve the mulled wine hot in mugs or heat-proof glasses. You can garnish each serving with a slice of orange and a cinnamon stick, if desired.

Enjoy your homemade mulled wine! Cheers!