Winter in Paris is bitterly cold, which is why it's no surprise that the wine-loving French seek out vin chaud—or mulled wine—once the winter weather sets in. Many cafés along Parisian streets boast their own special brew of mulled wine so that each passersby can step out of the cold and have a familiar and comforting drink. Although mulled wine is a common drink around Europe, what makes this mulled wine distinctly French is the addition of crème de cassis, or blackcurrant liquor. A popular ingredient in French food, blackcurrant adds a sweet berry flavor to this drink.

In the States, as the weather continues to get colder, we're starting to seek out warm drinks that have all of the holiday flavors we love. Since it's hard to get to France this holiday season, how better to celebrate the season of warm, comforting drinks than by making some French mulled wine at home?

Vin Chaud

  • Prep Time:5 mins
  • Cook Time:20 mins
  • Total Time:25 mins
  • Servings:4
  • Easy


  • 1 bottle red wine—pinot noir or merlot work best
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 1-5 inch by 1/2 inch piece orange zest
  • 2 cardamon pods or a pinch ground cardamon
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1/3 cup Crème de cassis
wine, juice, lemon, beer
Shelby McLennan
  • Step 1

    Pour wine into a large saucepan and add all ingredients. Mix together gently.

    #SpoonTip: If you can't get your hands on Crème de cassis, honey or blackcurrant syrup make for a perfect substitute—about 5 tablespoons should do the trick.

    ladle, water
    Shelby McLennan
  • Step 2

    Bring mixture just under a simmer on the lowest heat setting. Do not allow the wine to boil.

    beer, coffee
    Shelby McLennan
  • Step 3

    Strain spices from wine and serve. Add a slice of orange for garnish.

    tea, coffee, espresso, black tea
    Shelby McLennan
  • Step 4

    To store: keep in airtight container and refrigerate. Reheat gently.

    coffee, wine, tea, beer
    Shelby McLennan

#SpoonTip: If you're throwing a party and want to keep your vin chaud warm all night, throw it in a slow cooker after the above steps and put on the warm setting.