When Alice and I visited Denmark recently, I knew she was in for a treat. We’ve been around the world together — Thailand, Japan, China, Peru and even New Zealand, but we’d never been to Europe with each other. As it was October (and heading into November) in Scandinavia, it was cool (shock of shocks). I’m happy to admit when we visited Tivoli one of our favorite treats was Glühwein! Here’s our version.
“Open your eyes, look, you can see Sweden!” This is what Alice and I kept saying to each other riding The Golden Tower in Tivoli. If you don’t catch the reference, stop what you’re doing (after you make some Glühwein) and go watch “Copenhagen.” It’s a cute movie. You’re welcome.
Beyond seeing Sweden (epic) and enjoying more fine Nordic cuisine (Noma isn’t the only place making great food in Denmark) we needed something to warm ourselves. As we had the Copenhagen Card (a must when visiting Copenhagen), we had free entry to Tivoli. However, not wanting to spend all day there, we’d end our days there, meaning it was usually getting colder.
There is an abundance of Christmas beer in Denmark. I mean a freaking ton. That’s awesome. What it’s not, sadly, is warming.
After a day full of adventuring, exploring and wandering, we had a definite need to take a load off and warm up. Glühwein to the rescue!
You wonder what the difference between Glühwein and Glogg is — good question! The way I split the difference is that Glogg, for us, is almost always a holiday drink, while Glühwein is more just a cool weather drink. Also, with Glogg I like to leave in the spices, raisins and almonds. That way, you can get a drunken treat. Whereas with Glühwein you make a spiced syrup, remove the spices so only the syrup is left, add the wine, warm up and drink.
Oh, and with Glogg I like to finish with brandy or port, while with Glühwein I finish with rum. It’s what they did in Tivoli, so who am I to argue?
Now, go make yourself some Glühwein, get yourself a rød pølse (Danish hot dog, bright red, tiny bun, amazing condiments), put on “Copenhagen” and enjoy a fantastic time.
Onto the Glühwein!
- ½ cup honey
- 5 whole cloves
- 2 cardamom pods
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup OJ
- Rind of one orange
- 750 ml red wine (one bottle, drinkable, but not expensive)
- Golden rum
- Glass type: mug
- Add honey, spices, OJ, orange rind and water to a pot.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Remove spices and rind from the syrup.
- Add a bottle of red wine to the newly spiced holiday syrup.
- Bring up to a simmer.
- Simmer mind you, not boil.
- Don't scorch your wine now.
- Ladle into mugs.
- Pleasantly warm, yes?
- Top with as much golden rum as you want to increase your festiveness (I like plenty, Alice prefers some, choose your adventure).
- Garnish with a fresh orange twist.