Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud}

Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud} - 12 Cocktails of Christmas

When Lance and I visited Paris last March, we spent our first afternoon in the city checking out the Eiffel Tower. When we got there it was pouring rain, then it suddenly turned into hail, not to mention that it was freezing outside. By the time we made it to the top the hail and rain had stopped, but it was still quite cold.

Vin Chaud at the Eiffel Tower in Paris

We hovered near the concession stand inside and I saw a little sign that said ‘Vin Chaud” – I remembered enough high school French to know that meant hot wine or as we know it here, hot mulled wine. I jumped in line and got us each a glass. We found a bench and sipped it to warm up while looking out over Paris.

View from the top of the Eiffel Tower - Paris

I’d had mulled wine a couple times before that, but something about that wine was amazing. Maybe it was because I was in Pairs drinking French wine at the top of the Eiffel tower with my husband or maybe I’ve just never been cold enough to appreciate it -  whatever the reason, my mind was certainly changed.

Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud} - 12 Cocktails of Christmas

I set out to make some Vin Chaud at home that tasted great and brought back those memories of Paris, so I cooked up a batch for the next drink of my 12 Cocktails of Christmas series.

Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud} - 12 Cocktails of Christmas

With mulled wine you don’t need to use a fancy wine. We are adding all sorts of other flavors so something inexpensive and simple works great here. I have used both Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon for this and loved them both. So just use your favorite red (I’m sure you could use a white too!).

Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud} - 12 Cocktails of Christmas

I like to keep things simple for serving so I place all the spices in a piece of cheesecloth or a coffee filter and tie it up with a little bakers twine to keep everything in one place. This make serving a breeze. If you don’t have either of those you can let the spices float around in the pot with the wine, then just run the mixture through a strainer before serving.

Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud} - 12 Cocktails of Christmas

Personally, I love to serve this for parties. I throw a double (or triple) batch of everything in my slow cooker an hour or so before the party, then by the time the guests arrive the house smells fabulous. it’s a delicious low maintenance drink since the slow cooker keeps it warm. Just throw in a ladle, put out some mugs, and a few orange slices to garnish.

Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud} - 12 Cocktails of Christmas

Vin Chaud generally isn’t too sweet, but it’s easy to add more to adjust to your tastes and to the sweetness of your wine. I suggest starting with less and tasting it along the way to see if you need to add more.

Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud} - 12 Cocktails of Christmas

Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud}

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

Total Time: 2 hours, 5 minutes

Yield: 5 Servings

Serving Size: 150 ml (about 2/3 cup)

Hot Mulled Wine {Vin Chaud}


  • 1 (750 ml) bottle red wine
  • 1/4 -1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 orange, sliced - plus more to garnish
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, cut in half lengthwise
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 2 (3-inch) cinnamon sticks, plus more to garnish
  • 1 whole star anise


Pour wine into a 3 quart (or larger) slow cooker*. Stir in sugar and add orange slices. Scape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the wine mixture and add in the pod.

Place cloves, cinnamon sticks, and star anise on a small square of cheesecloth or a coffee filter**. Bring up sides and tie together with bakers twine to secure contents. Place spice satchel into the wine mixture.

Heat in slow cooker on low for 2-3 hours (or on high for 1 hour). To serve, remove and discard vanilla bean, orange slices and spice satchel. Place slow cooker on warm to maintain temperature.

Ladle mulled wine into mugs and garnish each cup with an orange slice and a cinnamon stick to serve.

*Mulled wine can also be made on the stovetop. Heat wine mixture (made as directed above) over medium heat for 30-45 minutes.

**Alternatively spices can be placed directly into the wine mixture. Before serving, pour mulled wine through a fine mesh strainer to remove and discard spices.


  1. Just love Vin Chaud. I wish it was as easy to get it out and about around here like it is this time of year at any cafe in Paris. ;-)
    Carrie @ Season It Already! recently posted..It Feels Like Vacation…My Profile

  2. Soooooo prettttttty!
    Ari @ Ari’s Menu recently posted..Honey Roasted Macadamia ButterMy Profile

  3. MMM. That sounds amazing! I’ve never actually tried mulled wine before! Maybe I should!!
    Mo recently posted..5 Things I Finally UnderstandMy Profile

  4. What beautiful pictures and an amazing memory that comes every time you make it. Someday I hope to take hubby man to see Paris. C’est magnifique!
    Wendy | Around My Family Table recently posted..Lemon Pepper Brussels Sprouts with BaconMy Profile

Speak Your Mind


CommentLuv badge