Watching the snow fall if you’re safe and warm inside is a special kind of magic. Getting out to shovel or clear it is a special kind of punishment. Coming back inside from snow removal is cause for reward, and here’s just the ticket: mulled wine.
Besides the great taste and the delightful warmth of this special drink is the additional pleasure you can take in using up some older wine or a bottle that may not be so great on its own but is just fine for this. It’s easy, too, so don’t be intimidated.
Pour a bottle (or so) of dry red wine in a saucepan. Put the heat on low. Sprinkle in some cinnamon (start with about 1/4 teaspoon and add more to taste if you want). If you like and have clove powder, add a dash of that (a little goes a long way). Add about 1/2 cup orange juice, and even 1/4 to 12 cup cranberry juice if you have it, but it’s not essential. When the wine is nice and warm, add about 1/4 cup of either orange liqueur like Grand Marnier, cognac, brandy, or rum (or spiced rum). Don’t add all of these, just choose a favorite for now.
You can experiment with something else on the next snow day. Stir the wine and taste it. If it’s not quite sweet enough for you, add a spoonful of brown sugar or maple syrup. Pour into mugs and garnish with an orange slice if you have one.
Put your feet up, by a fireplace is ideal.
Sip, savor, repeat.