Vintage Cellars


A Modern take on Mulled Wine

Mulled wine a.k.a. glögg or glühwein, is like hot cocoa for grownups. It’s comforting, nurturing, revivifying and even practical to drink in winter. Surely the appeal of a crackling fireplace, a communal pot of gooey fondue and mugs of toasty, spiked wine is universal? Typically concocted from some combination of fruit, spices, sugar, red wine plus a little something extra to fortify, mulled wine is an ancient cocktail that doesn’t have to be old fashioned. Here are three modern versions of mulled wine to return the rosy glow to your frostbitten cheeks.

The white way

Yes, you can enjoy mulled wine even if you are not in the mood for a heady red. Though rarely encountered on bar menus, you can easily substitute the red wine in your mulled wine for a white at home without losing that delightful cosy feeling. It all comes down to the little extras to pack the necessary punch.

2 sprigs of rosemary

1 cup white cranberry juice

Rind of 1 orange

750 ml bottle Portone Pinot Grigio

5 whole cloves

2 cinnamon sticks

1 whole star anise

1/4 cup Kinky Lux White Rum


Extra cinnamon sticks, rosemary sprigs, orange slices to garnish


Place all ingredients except wine and rum into a pot. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Add wine and rum and steep until warm. Avoiding rosemary, rind and spices, ladle into mugs or Irish coffee glasses and garnish with a cinnamon stick, a rosemary sprig and a slice of orange.

The lazy tippler's guide to mulled wine

Who has time to stir and beware of scorching when you have friends to greet and many marshmallows to toast? This foolproof, almost hands-off method to making mulled wine is also handy if you want something ready and waiting to combat the chill as soon as you walk in the door after a long day at work.


1/4 cup brown sugar

2 cinnamon sticks

4 whole cloves

1 orange

750ml bottle Climbing Merlot

1/4 cup Cointreau Noir


Stud the orange with cloves. Add all ingredients to slow cooker. Stir to combine and leave on low heat for at least two hours. Avoiding cloves and orange, ladle into mugs or Irish coffee glasses. Keep a cinnamon stick in to garnish.

The Best of Both Worlds

Remember how mulled wine is the adult hot cocoa? Well the best part about being all grown up is that you really can have it all! This recipe merges ruby wine with rich hot chocolate. You won’t need much convincing to replace your regular couch time treat of a glass of red plus a block of chocolate with this slightly more decadent affair.


750ml The Seafarer 570 Vines Pinot Noir

4 cinnamon sticks

6 cloves

2 star anise

2 bay leaves

4 cardamom pods, bruised

1 vanilla pod

200g golden castor sugar

250g dark chocolate

2 tablespoons McWilliams Hanwood Tawny Port


Add red wine, cinnamon, cloves, star anise, bay, cardamom, vanilla and sugar to a pot over a low heat. Stir while heating to a gentle simmer. Turn off the heat and sit for 30 minutes to an hour. Add broken up chocolate to the pan and heat, stirring until it melts. Add the port and strain into your favourite mugs.


Here’s hoping this trio of mulled wine recipes should keep you warm until the return of sangria weather.

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