Whether you’re playing hostess, or just arriving with a gift in hand, these yummy drink recipes will impress and delight. Mulled wine can be made days or weeks ahead of time and heated up at your friend’s party. As for the cocoa, I like to make it just before I leave the house and pour it into a pre-warmed Thermos. That way you can offer up your concoction without having to raid your friend’s kitchen!
 
  
Mulled Wine (per bottle)
3/4 C. Sugar
1/2 C. Water
1 Bottle Red Wine (Cabernet or Merlot work fine)
12 Whole Cloves
1 Large Cinnamon Stick
1/8 tsp. Freshly Grated Nutmeg
2 Lemons (cut into wedges)
1 Orange (cut into wedges)
1/2 C. Orange Juice
 
Directions: Boil the sugar and water until sugar is dissolved. Add remaining ingredients squeezing each lemon and orange wedge a bit to release the juice and oils. Simmer over very low heat, stirring occasionally, until the wine is warm and flavorful and you just start to see steam. (Be sure not to boil!) Add sugar to taste if you desire.
 
Strain and serve, or cool and pour back into the bottles and refrigerate. You can reheat any quantity you like, and your mulled wine will keep in the refrigerator for weeks!
 
 
Hot Chocolate with Irish Cream (Makes 2 Cups)
 
2 C. Milk (any kind)
4 Tbs.  Trader Joe’s Sipping Chocolate
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
1/4 C. Irish Cream
Freshly Grated Cinnamon

Directions: Place milk in a saucepan over medium heat and whisk in chocolate powder. Heat until scalded. Whisk in vanilla and pour into two mugs. Stir in the Irish Cream and finish with freshly grated cinnamon.
 
*Feeling elaborate? Serve with homemade peppermint marshmallows!
 
 
Poinsettia (The Easy Method)
 
Champagne or White Wine (Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay work well)
Cranberry Juice
 
Directions: Add a splash of cranberry juice to your champagne or wine. Simple and delicious!
 

Do you have any special drink recipes for holiday times?