We’re sharing a festive take on a Newfoundland classic party drink today – Mulled Wine Slush. It’s a mashup that serves the best of both worlds! Plus, there’s just enough time to whip it up for a special New Years Eve tipple.
No doubt, everyone’s heard of mulled wine before. It’s a classic the world over. But here in Newfoundland, there’s another holiday classic – slush. If you haven’t heard of slush before, it’s basically many variations on a frozen cocktail. It’s also usually strong (hence the name – the alcohol prevents it from freezing solid resulting in a slushy texture) and often stored in the most versatile of Newfoundland containers – the salt beef bucket…cleaned and emptied of course! It also usually involves a kitchen-sink variety of ingredients. Frozen whipped topping, fruit punch, pineapple juice, whatever else is lying around, and a full bottle of rum or vodka. It’s not gourmet, but it goes down easy and gets the job done, so to speak.
This is admittedly not a traditional slush. Mulled wine is usually served hot and one cup at a time, while slush is, well, frozen and drunk in large quantities. However, it’s so much fun to make slush and we wanted to try something a bit more to our own tastes. Enter this Mulled Wine Slush. After a few trials, the right balance came into focus. The final version basically screams Christmas, but is highly drinkable. It’s got cranberries and cranberry cocktail, orange slices and orange liquor, cinnamon, cardamon, cloves and a touch of honey. Finally, we chose bourbon as our liquor of choice, partly because it’s delicious and partly just we’re a whiskey family at heart. A splash of soda water to top up, and that’s it!
Mulled Wine Slush
A festive new take on a couple of classic holiday drinks – mulled wine and slush.
Note: If your spices are older than a year or two, you may need to add a little bit extra to compensate.
- 1 bottle fruity red wine such as Beaujolais
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 5 whole cloves
- 8 whole cardamon pods, lightly crushed
- 1 orange, sliced
- 1 ½ tbsp honey
- ½ cup whole cranberries, fresh or frozen
- 1 cup cranberry cocktail
- ½ cup bourbon whiskey
- ½ cup orange liquor, such as Triple Sec
- soda water, to taste
In a large pot, bring the wine to just below a simmer. Add the cinnamon, cardamon, cloves, orange and cranberries and continue to simmer for an additional 15 minutes. Prevent the mixture from boiling or too much alcohol will cook off the wine.
Remove the mixture from the heat and strain the liquid into a freezer-proof container. Add the honey and stir until dissolved, followed by the cranberry cocktail, bourbon, and orange liquor.
Place the mixture in a freezer for at least 24 hours, stirring every 8 hours or so to ensure even freezing and smaller ice crystals. Keep frozen until ready to serve.
To serve, scoop slush into a tumbler glass or champagne coupe, topping with a little splash of soda water. Garnish with a cinnamon stick and/or sugared cranberries if desired.