Bourbon Glüg

From the story An East Bay Winter Whiskey Ramble by Serena Bartlett

On a fall trip to the coastline of Washington State, I discovered that the traditional Scandinavian glüg, a mulled wine that often sees the addition of such stronger spirits as aquavit, brandy, or vodka, tastes fabulous when fortified with whiskey. A few friends and I procured ingredients at a farm stand in the small town of Copalis Beach and made a heaping pot of it to warm us up after a day of clamming.

1 gallon apple cider
¾ bottle of an inexpensive spicy red wine
8 ounces berry jam
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
½ cup maple syrup
1 cup cranberry sauce or ½ a bag of frozen whole cranberries
2 cinnamon sticks
5 or 6 whole star anise
2 oranges, chopped into rounds
⅓ cup toasted pecans
Bourbon to taste (we used Bulleit)

Pour the wine and apple cider into a large stockpot over medium heat. Add remaining ingredients except for half of the toasted pecans and the whiskey and simmer for at least a half hour before the first mug is served. Keep on low heat and serve warm throughout the evening. Add a splash of whiskey and a few pecans before serving. I like to garnish with a fresh slice of orange.

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