Todd Thrasher, of Restaurant Eve in Alexandria, Virginia puts a twist on some classic holiday drinks.
Warmed up red wine infused with aromatic spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves and allspice. Your house will smell warm and inviting as your guests arrive. Thrasher’s version includes a touch of orange brandy to warm the soul.
- 8 lemons, peeled and seeded
- 8 oranges, peeled and seeded
- 4 750-ml bottles of Grenache (preferably from Priorat, Spain)
- Fresh ground nutmeg, to taste
- Cloves, to taste
- 4 ounces Grand Marnier
- 1-1/2 cups super fine sugar
- 1 bag of orange spice tea
- 4 large cinnamon sticks
- Gingerbread men cookies, for garnish
Cut the lemon and oranges into thin slices and set aside. Pour the red wine into a copper pot or a large saucepan and gradually heat over very low temperature. Do not let the wine boil. Add the fruit, nutmeg, cloves and brandy. When the wine warms up, whisk in the sugar. After the sugar dissolves, add the tea bag and let it steep for 4 to 5 minutes.
Remove the wine from heat and strain it. Pour into glasses or mugs garnished with gingerbread men.