Klassisk Gløgg Recipe for Your Holiday Party

Mulled Wine with a Scandinavian Twist

Hello Castle Rock Homebrewers, let me share a little Christmas tradition from my family to yours. I’ve lived all over the world, but when it comes to Christmas I always resort back to the traditions of my place of birth, Denmark, to help get into the spirit of Christmas. We make our own decorations by braiding colorful paper in to hearts and stars to decorate the tree, we bake a lot of cookies and make a lot of confectionery with marzipan, nougat and chocolate, and once I hit my late teens, Klassisk gløgg was a big part of making the holidays “taste” like Christmas.

wine-making Colorado

Homemade redwine is great for mulled wine during the holidays

Your homemade reds are perfect for mulled wine

Like Colorado, snow and frost was and always will be part of every Christmas in Copenhagen. Well, the truth is, the snow tended not to come until mid-January, but in my mind every Christmas white. Since Castle Rock is all about homemade wine, I thought I’d share one little tradition of Christmas in Denmark: mulled wine. Or as we call it: Gløgg! I’m sure we all have our way of making mulled wine, and the possibilities are endless, but this is how we do it in my family. I hope you like it!


2 bottles red wine

¼-½  bottle cognac or brandy

light brown sugar, more to taste

1 tbsp whole cloves

2-4 cinnamon sticks

2 Star anise

1/2 cup Raisins

1/2 Blanched sliced almonds


Orange peel – my aunt insists that it needs to be in there, but I’ve just never really liked the orange part of Gløgg so when I make it, I leave it out. No one has complained yet.

How to prepare the mulled wine ingredients

First off, these “measurements” are pretty loose. If you want it more or less spicy, sweeter or more tart, simply adjust the amount of spices, sugar and brandy you use in your mulled wine concoction. Now, some just throw the spices into the liquid and let is all get to know each other, but I would always get a big fillable tea-bag. You know, the ones you fill yourself with loose leafed tea. You can either crush up the spices, or just place them in the tea bag whole. The tea bag will eliminate the need to strain the wine before serving. If you’re getting ready for a large holiday party, any step that can be eliminated should be. In this case, when you are ready to serve the gløgg, simply remove the tea bag (or spice bag) and toss it.

Homebrewed Wine

Homemade red wines are great for mulled wine holiday beverage

Anyway, once you’ve prepared the spice bag, throw it in the pot and add your wine and cognac and sugar and let it all come to a rolling boil. Taste as you go along. Add more brandy and sugar if you feel you need it. Remove the spice bag when you feel it has done enough. Once it’s simmering, let it rest on low heat on the stove for the rest of the night. The longer it mulls, the more the flavors will meld and the smells of Christmas will fill your whole house. Add the raisins and blanched sliced almond to finish. By the end of the evening, the raisins should have soaked up enough mulled wine to look like a real grape again, and it is a wonderful little burst of Christmas flavor all on its own.

Castle Rock has the largest selection of Winexpert Wine Kits

Come to Castle Rock Homebrew Supply for everything you need to make your own red wine. From our Winexpert Wine Kits, to brewing equipment, right down to bottling and labeling. Making your own wine has never been easier. Come by and take a wine class, or simply chose from our many types of wines to get you started. See you at Castle Rock!


Leave a Comment