Vin Chaud

Vin chaud is a warm, mulled wine cocktail that is a staple at Christmas markets all over France. It’s also perfect for entertaining around the holidays. Makes 6 servings.

Mulling Spices

We had to go to Paris this past weekend. Sunday to pick up Marc’s parents from the airport and Monday for Ellie’s appointment at the American embassy. Not that I’m complaining. Having to go to Paris is never a bad thing, and going at Christmas time is an awesome experience. We even got engaged in Paris over Christmas – four years ago to the day actually.

There’s so much more to do in Paris during the holidays. There’s the Ferris wheel at Place de la Concorde, ice skating with the Eiffel Tower as your backdrop, Christmas lights a-plenty and the Christmas market lining the Champs-Elyseés. Fresh crepes and waffles, Christmas beer and warm cups of vin chaud.

More drink choices: If you love the flavors of this drink, you will definitely love my Christmas sangria.

Vin Chaud 1

Of course, vin chaud is the star of every Christmas market in the country, but it’s especially festive when you’re roaming the glowing Parisian streets. There’s glowing from rain, not just Christmas lights, but it’s a beautiful sight to see.

Vin chaud has easily become one of my favorite Christmas traditions since we moved to France. I look forward to it every year, but I really wanted to try making it at home – in preparation for when we no longer live here. And, I think I’ve perfected the recipe.

Vin Chaud 2

How to make vin chaud:

Vin chaud doesn’t require a fancy or expensive wine. I think the bottle I used cost me maybe 2 euros. Personally, I think any wine would do, but a softer, fruitier wine seems a little better suited for mulling.

All you have to do is warm the wine on the stove and stir in the sugar till it melts. Then just drop in the mulling items, cinnamon, anise, cloves, ginger and citrus and wait. You don’t have to wait too long, but you will definitely need to wait. When it’s ready, serve them in fancy glass mugs or hot toddy glasses – if you have them. A stemless wine glass would be really cute, too.

Vin Chaud 3

And, if you like this recipe, make sure to check out my mulled wine cranberry sauce. It’s perfect to spice up your holiday meal.


Vin Chaud

  • Author: Melissa Belanger
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4 - 6 servings 1x


  • 750 ml bottle red wine
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 navel orage, sliced
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 star anise
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1 tablespoons lemon juice


  1. In a large saucepan, combine wine and sugar. Heat over medium until sugar is dissolved, stirring as needed.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and reduce heat to lowest setting and simmer for at least 30 minutes.


Wine can be prepared in advance and stored in an airtight container. Reheat before serving.


  • Calories: 0
  • Sugar: 0 g
  • Sodium: 0 mg
  • Fat: 0 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 0 g
  • Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 0 g
  • Fiber: 0 g
  • Protein: 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

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  • Reply
    December 17, 2014 at 2:19 pm

    Mmhhh…I remember this holiday tradition from German Christmas markets. There its called Glühwein, literally meaning glowing wine 🙂
    Just noticed it doesn’t say in the recipe when to add the remaining ingredients.

  • Reply
    December 17, 2014 at 10:33 pm

    Yum! This sounds just perfect, and your photos are gorgeous! Uh.. so jealous that you’re in Paris…. so.. love it while you can!!

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