Mulled Wine, the taste of Christmas in Bohemia
The Czechs call it “vánoční svařák” (little wine of Christmas) from the words svařené víno (cooked wine) while the Germans call it “Glühwein.” On every square in every town and city throughout Central Europe, sipping on steaming mugs of mulled wine is the traditional way to keep yourself warm and cheerful while you meet with friends or stroll the festive Christmas markets lined with wooden cottages brimming with crafts and gifts.
Of course, if you are travelling this holiday season, there is nothing like sipping your svařák right beneath the giant Christmas Tree on Prague’s Old Town Square or toasting with a steaming mug of Glühwein in front of Vienna’s beautifully lit Rathaus.
But there is no reason not to enjoy the taste of a Central European Christmas wherever you are in the festive season!
Here below is our favorite recipe for mulled wine so you can conjure Bohemian holiday spirit from anywhere over the globe.
- One bottle of dry red wine
- Fresh oranges, few pieces
- Cinnamon, 2 sticks
- Sugar/honey, 2-4 teaspoons
- Spices: the star of the show is cloves (5-8 pieces) and star anise (few pieces) and a sprinkle of ginger and / or cardamom
Step 1: All your ingredients go into the pot.
Step 2: Simmer for 30 minutes – 2 hours on low-heat and covered. No vigorous boiling please.
Step 3: Serve! It really is that simple. You might enjoy it in colorful mugs in the way they frequently serve it at Christmas markets or you might decorate your cups with orange slices and cinnamon sticks.
Merry Christmas ! Veselé Vánoce! Frohe Weihnachten!