So, to try to keep spirits high with Xmas Cheer, I thought I would test out some non-alcoholic mulled wine alternatives.
Belvoir Mulled Winter Punch
£2.46 per bottle
Available from www.belvoirfruitfarms.co.uk/shop/mulled-winter-punch
A rich spicy non-alcoholic fruit drink, best served warm. Made from fruit juices and spices.
Yum! This tastes just like mulled wine, although it doesn't have the 'kick' of an alcoholic wine. It is more fruity though which makes it so yummy. My hubby loved it too, possibly more than the alcoholic version!!
£3.84 per bottle
Available from www.belvoirfruitfarms.co.uk/shop/cordials
These fruit cordials come in a variety of flavours, but the Xmassy ones are:
- Spiced winter berry
- Honey, lemon, ginger
- Spiced apple and ginger
They can be mixed with hot water for a warm spicy punch.
These taste delicious. The Spiced Winter Berry flavour in particular, tastes to me a lot like mulled wine, again without the 'kick'. It is very sweet and delicious. In fact, I'm drinking one right now! It also lasts longer than a pre-mixed bottle!
Rochester Mulled Berry Punch
£4.99 for a 725ml Bottle
Available from Holland and Barrett
This fruit punch contains: Water, Organic Raw Cane Sugar, Organic Elderberry, Organic Blackcurrant and Organic Apple Juices (all from concentrate), Organic Mixed Spices (all ground), Citric Acid, Organic Orange Oil.
A nice warming, spicy Xmas drink, very similar to the Belvoir, although just not quite as tasty.
Eisberg Cabernet Sauvignon
The full range is available in Morrisons and selected varieties in Asda, Waitrose, at RRP £3.50.
The Eisberg alcohol free wine tastes like a real glass of wine, but without the alcohol units, and with just a third of the calories! Made in the same way as your favourite wine, the alcohol is then gently removed using one of the world’s most advanced techniques to ensure that as much of the original character and flavours of the wine are kept intact. The result is an alcohol-free wine containing less than 0.005% alcohol, only 34 calories per 125ml glass and the real flavour of the wine varieties that you know and love. Available in Chardonnay, Riesling, Rosé and Cabernet Sauvignon.
I tried the red, the Cabernet Sauvignon. Firstly I sampled a glass without the mulled spice, and yes, it does taste like wine! I then tried it warmed and mulled, and really couldn't tell the difference until I sipped a mouthful of hubb's 'real' one, and realised the alcohol 'kick' is definitely missing. However, this is the closest you will get to a verion of mulled wine that tastes like the real thing but without the alcohol.
Here is a lovely mulled wine recipe:
Or for lazy/busy Mums try a ready prepared spice bag from Schwartz: http://www.schwartz.co.uk/products/herbs-and-spices/spices/mulled-wine-spice.aspx?gclid=COqz2q_AmbsCFdHItAodyVAAIA
This contains an aromatic and warming blend including orange peel and cassia. With a Foil Fresh seal for extra flavour, it is £1.59 for 6 sachets.
Mulled Wine Instant Tea
Available from: www.whittard.co.uk/instant-tea/instant-tea-flavours/mulled-wine-instant-tea.htm
£5.50 for 475g
A fruity and mildly spiced mulled wine flavour tea, which is alcohol free. Ingredients are: Cane Sugar, citric acid, tea extract (0.95%), natural flavouring, colouring (beetroot red). This is an instant tea powder and is suitable for Vegans (me!) and Vegetarians.
I was expecting a black tea with spices, but this actually has no 'tea' flavour, it is a magic powder which is stirred into hot water and makes a hot drink that tastes like a sweet mulled fruit punch. Amazing! Lasts forever too!
Twinings Mulled Spiced Tea
£6 for a caddy of 20 wrapped bags
Available from: http://shop.twinings.co.uk/shop/christmas-tea-gifts/christmas-teas/twinings-mulled-spiced-tea-caddy.html
Assam Black tea with cinnamon cloves and Christmas Spice flavouring
This is not decaf, so I limit myself to one a day, but absolutely love the taste. It is a nicer spice than a chai, much more Christmassy tasting, and works very well with the black tea and a dash of soya milk. Lovely as a gift with the tea caddy too. Tastes nothing like mulled wine but a Xmas tea and a mince pie always goes down well.