We are celebrating the new year here with a special hot mulled wine beverage courtesy of my daughter, Jenna, who recently returned from a trip to Germany.
Christmas Markets are a highlight for the dark and chilly month of December in Germany and she was fortunate to visit several. These elaborate temporary markets are in all the cities, some cities having several! They feature lights, greenery, Christmas displays and performances, a few rides like carousels or a Ferris wheel, some have nativity scenes with real animals, and one of the Berlin markets included a skating rink. All the markets have many, many decorated booths and pop-up shops selling wonderful gifts and delicious food and drink.
Here is a short video peek at the Christmas Market in Dresden, one of the markets she visited. The video is from 2017, not from her visit, but perfectly captures the spirit and flavor of the Christmas markets!
One of the favorite beverages is the Glühwein, a delicious spiced mulled wine served hot in a commemorative mug specific for the particular market – you can keep the mug or turn it in for a rebate.
There are an infinite number of variations on what can go into Glühwein, but the spices are generally similar to mulled cider flavorings. Here is the variation we used to re-create the market experience at home:
1 bottle dry red wine
2 cinnamon sticks
5 star anise
10 (or so ) whole cloves
1 orange (juice and zest)
2 green cardamon pods
1 cup (ish) any red berry fruit juice (or sugar and fruit may be added instead) to sweeten to taste
1 vanilla bean (optional – we didn’t include this in ours)
Optional: add a shot of amaretto (we DID include this!) or rum to the mug when serving
Garnish with orange and a cinnamon stick
This is the perfect beverage to enjoy in front of the fire on a chilly night. The cinnamon stick garnish was so happy, it relaxed enough to unfurl?! I suspect the Glühwein would have the same effect on your family/friends…
Need servingware to host your guests in style? Click on each image below for more details:
Happy New Year!
**Please note that this page may contain affiliate links meaning that if you make a purchase, I might make a small commission at no extra charge to you.