Oh the weather outside is frightful, and the mulled wine we're making is so delightful... we mean, mulled wine makes the perfect cocktail for chilly winter nights — and a wonderful cap to your Thanksgiving dinner. This recipe, created by California's Estancia winery, can be made in advance for your Thanksgiving festivities.
- 1 bottle Estancia Monterey County Pinot Noir
- 2 Cups apple cider
- 1/2 Cup honey or sugar (or more to taste)
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 large orange (and the juice)
- 1 lemon
- 1 lime
- 4 whole cloves
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 star anise pods
- 1 whole vanilla pod, cut lengthwise
- 1 Whole nutmeg, for grating
Peel long strips of rind from the orange, lemon, and lime and place in a saucepan along with the sugar/honey and the juice of the orange. Add the cloves, cinnamon sticks, 3 gratings of nutmeg, zest of orange, bay leaves, and sliced vanilla pod. Pour enough wine and cider to cover the sugar and place over medium heat. Stir frequently until the mixture boils and thickens slightly (roughly 5 minutes). Pour in the rest of the wine and cider and turn the heat down to low. Add the star anise and leave the mixture to heat through for about 10 minutes without boiling. Make sure to leave the spices and zest in the pan. Ladle into glasses or mugs and garnish with slices of orange, nutmeg, or cinnamon sticks and enjoy.