Time for something a bit festive here at the Octavian Vaults news centre. If you have been visiting the site late you will have noticed that we have been covering everything a wine investor needs from market analysis to how to store your investments, but with December just around the corner we just had to bring you our advice on making the perfect mulled.
Despite many in Europe seeing mulled wine as somewhat of a treat during the festive period, mulled wine hasn’t always been such a high-quality beverage. In fact, the spicing of wine back in the Victorian times was usually to disguise low quality, sour tasting wines for the poorer families.
Oriental spices were quite new at the time and the addition of them had become somewhat of a craze at the time, before dying out and becoming more of a festive affair in recent decades.
Top Tip: If you have a red or white wine you have bought this year and not particularly liked, this could be the perfect choice for your mulled wine. You could repurpose this into a spectacular Christmas mulled wine recipe!
There are inevitably several recipes available for mulled wine, with many liking to put their own twist on the Christmas classic, so ours is by no means the right one. However, our fine wine enthusiasts have put their heads together and come up with a mulled wine that we truly think will hit this spot throughout the festive season.
1 Bottle of Red Wine
60g/2oz Demerara Sugar
1 Cinnamon Stick
1 Orange, Halved
1 Dried Bay Leaf
60ml/2fl Oz Sloe or Damson gin (optional)
Making mulled wine is actually incredibly simple and making a great one is usually dependent on picking the best ingredients, which we will come onto shortly. However, below we have detailed our recommendations for pulling these mulled wine ingredients in the perfect way.
- Place your red wine into a heavy pan with the orange, bay leaf, sugar and spices.
- Heat the mixture until all of the sugar has melted and have a taste to see if it needs sweetening, this will often come down to taste.
- If have decided to opt for the damson gin, then this is the time to add it.
- Finally, strain your mulled wine mixture into heatproof glasses and serve
Of course, as purveyors of all things fine wine, no Octavian guide would be complete without us letting you know exactly which kind to choose for your festive season brew. Although all red wines will suffice, choosing an absolute belter will ensure your mulled wine recipe makes you the envy of your friends and family this festive season.
The key is not to pick a red that is too delicate in flavour, as the mulling will disguise a lot of the taste leaving your end product somewhat bland. So instead of reaching for a Pinot Noir, go for something full bodied such as a Malbec or perhaps a Syrah.
You can also use white wine if you so desire, but this has been described as an acquired taste; so be very wary when going for this. If you are a white wine fanatic, then it may be worth experimenting but bear in mind your guests may not appreciate your adventurous nature.
If you’re going for this option then we recommend going for something like a Chenin Blanc or a Riesling, as their aromatic natures will blend well with the spices you have in your mulled wine mix.
That just about concludes our recipe for mulled wine, due to its fairly basic nature there isn’t much more to say about the nation’s favourite Christmas tipple. As you will notice, the bare ingredients aren’t too complex, and it is quite difficult to mess it up.
However, if you are looking to wow guests and have a fine mulled wine that will get you serious brownie points, then it makes sense to get some premium ingredients as you always get what you pay for with recipes such as these.
We hope you have a fantastic Christmas and New Year and should you need any more guidance on any aspect of fine wine storage or investment, just take a look through the rest of our ever-popular news section. Alternatively, you can get in touch with the Octavian Vaults team; here.