Nothing shouts Christmas more than a steaming glass of mulled wine, but this year, pull out all the stops with a mezcal-spiked festive punch. Our favorite recipe comes from Doña Vega – a family-owned mezcal brand, founded and run by Mexican women.
Doña Vega mezcal is made in a small town outside of Oaxaca – Santiago Matatlán, using a family recipe that has been passed down through five generations. Headed up by Sonya Vega, Doña Vega artfully maintains the heritage of mezcal making, while simultaneously offering a fresh take in a typically male-dominated industry.
The brand was born of Vega’s love for the agave spirit, but her frustration in finding that most mezcals were overpoweringly smoky. To make it a bit more approachable, Doña Vega’s skilled team allows the agave plants to ripe for a prolonged period to guarantee a touch of natural sweetness.
The resulting liquid still has the signature touch of mezcal smoke, but lighter notes are able to cut through. The Doña Vega Espadín is smooth enough to sip neat but will also make a delicious addition to any festive cocktails. While a mulled wine is traditionally finished with a good glug of brandy, we love switching it out for mezcal for a unique take on a classic favorite.
[See also: Sustainable Whisky and Spirits for Eco-Conscious Drinkers]
- 1 750ml bottle of dry red wine
- 6 oz of Doña Vega Espadín
- 6 oz of fresh orange juice
- 2 oz of agave syrup
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 orange, sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 4 oz of water
Add all ingredients to a large pot and heat gently over the stove. Allow to simmer but not boil, and serve in a glass with a slice of orange to finish.