The Yuletide Drink – Traditional Red Wine ~ “Glögi”



Glögi, also known as “glow wine” is a drink that is largely known  throughout Germany and Scandinavia.

It’s the traditional Yuletide drink used to ring in the New Year.

Glögi, basically, is a very fragrant and delicious spiced wine drink  that is warmed slightly and served with an assortment of sweet and  savory Holiday party snacks.

The drink is infused with: whole cloves, cinnamon sticks, cardamom seeds, orange zest, ginger, raisins and peeled almonds.

Some even spike the wine with a little cognac, rum or to provide an extra  Holiday zing!

Whole spices are used to make “Glögi.” The ground variety will  cloud the wine and not give it the vibrant look the drink is named after.

The raisins and almonds, that are the usual accompaniments to this drink, are placed in serving bowls alongside the “Glögi” allowing each guest to take as little or as much as they want.


The raisins can be steeped in some rum or cognac, as well, to add an additional “punch” to the drink.

For the children, a non-alcoholic version of this drink can be made. Simply warm some grape juice enriched with the glögi spices and  serve with the  raisins  and almonds on the side.

This is an extremely popular drink during the Holidays in Northern Europe and to many it is a Yuletide tradition that is a must.



Traditional Red-Wine Glögi

( serves-5)


1 bottle – Red Wine ( your favorite variety)

1-1/2 cups – Water

1/2 cup – Sugar

1 – Cinnamon stick

1 teaspoon – Cardamom seeds ( whole)

3-5 slivers – Orange zest ( pith removed)

3 – Cloves

6 inches – Cheese cloth ( to wrap the spices in) If no cheese cloth is available simply pass the Glögi through a fine mesh strainer  prior to serving. Garnish:

1 lbs. – Peeled almonds
1/2 lbs. – Raisins (steeped in rum or cognac)  Steeping in alcohol is an optional choice.


Heat the water in a sauce pan add the sugar and dissolve it.

Wrap the spices in the cheese cloth and tie it closed. Place the tied bundle into the pan. If you don’t have cheesecloth, gently stir in spices.

Heat until just under a boil and remove the cheese cloth.  (If not using cheese cloth pass through the fine mesh strainer.)

Add the wine and heat again until just under a boil. Place a dessert spoon in each of the serving glasses prior to pouring in the “fiery drink”

Add some raisins and almonds to the drink or serve them separately on the side.

Now give a big CHEERS to the New Year and enjoy!



Happy New Year!

  • Anu

    One great tradition. During the winter holidays, this is a welcome drink to share with friends and family