Red wine and spices are the base ingredients for this European winter warmer: but from there, anything is possible. You'll find mulled wine in bars and pubs all over town in the colder months, and you'll be warm in no time even if you don't have a fireplace handy.
Melbourne's best mulled wine
Prim, proper and served in fine china, this Madame knows the key to a great mulled wine. A hearty red is richly infused with figs and strawberries, then hit with a generous swig of brandy. The European blend is made to share, so be sure your drinking partner likes things spicy.
The kings of cheese and booze pairings are taking the traditional German path here, brewing up their Glühwein with aniseed stars, whole nutmeg, cardamom pods and hints of citrus. Each guest gets a complimentary nip on arrival, and you can also drink by the glass at both Carlton and St Kilda locations. Available exclusively during the winter months.
Is there a better sight on a cold night than a crackling fire and a big, black cauldron filled with mulled wine? The heavy scent of spice hits you as soon as you enter Vegie Bar's back bar; hold the glass close and it will clear your sinuses before the first sip. High on clove factor but balanced with a good hit of citrus, waiting 30 minutes for a table almost becomes a treat.
Other places to get your mulled wine fix
Lygon Street's wine nerd paradise ReWine will be serving mulled wine at their wine bar all winter long. They even set up shop at the Winter Night Markets at Victoria Market – just look out for the giant neon mulled wine sign. Prefer to make it at home? ReWine also sells a syrup to add to your own wine mix, perfect if bracing the outdoors to get your fix seems way too arduous.