Holiday Spirits – Glühwein

This recipe was inspired by a delicious spiced wine our brother-in-law Rob made last winter. It’s called Glühwein (which roughly translates to “glow-wine”) and believe me–this stuff will definitely make you glow.  It’s like fireside in a glass, and it makes the house smell great. And while it’s just basically wine, fruit, and spices, there’s a special kind of alchemy that occurs when you heat it up that gives it quite a kick.

Which reminds me: as delicious as it is, I’d recommend pacing yourself with the Glühwein–the holiday cheer in this one sort of sneaks up on you.


2 cups water

5 Tbs sugar

3 cinnamon sticks

4 – 6 whole cloves

1 orange

1 lemon

1 bottle of red wine

A little bit of grated nutmeg — about 10 gratings (or if using jarred, maybe 1/8 tsp or so)


Peel large sections from the orange and lemon.  Then cut the orange and lemon in half, and squeeze the juices into a large saucepan. Stick the cloves into the back of one of the orange halves (this keeps them from ending up in someone’s cup later on), and add the peels, the orange and lemon halves, the water, the sugar and the spices (everything but the wine) into the pan. Simmer until the sugar has dissolves, and then bring to a boil to reduce it a bit (about 5 minutes).


Once you’ve got it reduced a bit, turn the heat down and add the wine.


Heat the wine about 5 minutes, or until it’s nice and warm. Remove the spices, ladle the wine into your favorite cups, and enjoy.

Or, if you’re not sure if you made the Good List this year, leave a cup of this out with some cookies. You’ll shoot to the top of the list in no time flat.