This fragrant take on glühwein (German for “mulled wine”) is coziness in a cup. Created by Bryan Schneider, who helms the bar at N.Y.C.’s new West Village steak house Quality Eats, it is typically served over ice but may also be enjoyed hot. Don’t overheat the spices or the wine, he advises. “You want to extract the heady aromatics without bringing out any bitterness.” Pro tip: Vary your glassware. A hodgepodge of silhouettes feels festive and eclectic in the very best way. What’s more, a cluster of sprigs (or a full-blown bouquet) will not only beautify your bar—it’ll perfume the air. Read on for the recipe.
Active time: 10 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes, plus chilling
½ cup sugar
½ cup water
Finely grated zest of 1 medium orange
2 star anise pods ($9/lb; amazon.com)
2 4-inch cinnamon sticks
1 tsp allspice berries
1 tsp whole cloves
Fresh ginger, ½-inch slice, peeled
1 bottle dry red wine, such as Carro 2012 ($10; winemadeeasy.com)
½ cup aquavit liqueur
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Crushed ice, for serving
Lemon and orange twists and mint sprigs, for garnish
1. In a medium nonreactive saucepan, combine sugar, water, orange zest, anise, cinnamon, allspice, cloves, and ginger. Bring to a simmer over moderate heat, stirring occasionally. Add wine; bring to a simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for 30 minutes. Strain and refrigerate overnight.
2. Stir aquavit and lemon juice into the cooled wine. Pour the sangria into wineglasses filled with crushed ice; garnish with citrus twists and mint.
For more dinner party ideas—including recipes for Braised Chicken Legs, Spinach & Fennel Salad, and Individual Apple Crostadas—pick up the February issue of InStyle, available on newsstands and for digital download now.