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Making Vin Chaud

3142117110_e1a6c2a33bA favorite drink in the Christmas markets in France and in cozy cabins in the Alps, Vin Chaud, or French mulled wine, is not only the perfect winter drink, but also delightfully easy to make yourself.

Vin Chaud was originally made as a means of saving wine that had gone bad—by adding sugar and spices it often made the wine drinkable again. Today it is a traditional wintertime drink.

Just the sweet spiced aroma of the Vin Chaud in my kitchen makes me think of cupping glasses of the drink to keep my hands warm in the beautifully decorated streets of Paris at Christmastime.

Vin Chaud Recipe

1 Bottle of Red Wine (preferably cheap and your choice of dry or sweeter)

Coarsely ground cinnamon or about 4 cinnamon sticks

A few cloves (optional)

About ¼ cup of honey (or more–sweeten to taste)

2 thinly sliced oranges and teaspoon of orange zest


Combine ingredients and heat on the stove over medium-low heat and let simmer. Do not allow wine to boil. After several minutes it will start releasing beautifully spiced vapors that fill the kitchen space with intoxicating aroma. Serve hot.

Has talking about all this wine made you thirsty for more? Check out this additional information, so you can sound chic while sipping your drink by the fire:

Wine Regions of France
A Guide to French Wine
Understanding the Four Categories of French Wine
Wine Tasting in France
French Wine Tasting Vacations
French Apéritifs

Photo by lokulin on flickr