| Victoria Banaszak


There's something about the smell of mulled wine that makes you feel festive. Realistically though, it's the mulled wine spices that have that Christmassy scent. So, why not leave out the wine completely and try our no wine "mulled wine"? It's packed full of citrus fruit, cinnamon, star anise and cloves, along with maple syrup and our star ingredient, APRTF Bitter Apperitif.


Why we love no wine "mulled wine"


There is something a little bit frustrating about going to a Christmas party and only being offered fruit juice. With all the smells wafting around, you want to immerse yourself in the atmosphere and dive into the spices. This no wine "mulled wine" can be served as an alcohol-free alternative at a Christmas party, or simply serve this instead of mulled wine so that all your guests can enjoy it.


As with our other alcohol-free cocktail recipes, our no wine "mulled wine" retains the essence of its alcoholic counterpart. This one is extra special because we've managed to create it using alcohol-free bitter aperitif instead of alcohol-free wine. This offers an additional flavour kick that you don't even get with standard mulled wine. And it's delicious.


Enjoy this heated over a low heat, then left to sit while the spices infuse slowly into your drink. Leave a pan of it on a lukewarm hob for the evening with a ladle beside it, so your guests can help themselves. Don't forget the garnishes though! We suggest an orange wedge, cinnamon stick and star anise. Alternatively, serve it in a cup and saucer with a festive spiced biscuit or gingerbread on the side.  


No wine mulled wine or non alcoholic "mulled wine" served in a festive mug on a natural log with walnuts beside and a black candle behind


Food pairings for no wine "mulled wine"


There are many delicious pairings for mulled wine, whether with or without alcohol. Our suggestions are a little varied, so we have split them between savoury, sweet and nibbles. This versatile drink will be the star of the show, whatever you decide to serve it with.




For savoury pairings, you're looking for strong, rich flavours. For example:


  • Baked camembert or cheese fondue
  • Beef or mushroom stroganoff
  • Cheese and charcuterie board




You may be surprised that we are suggesting pairing a sweet drink with sweet food. But picture the scene. You're strolling through a Christmas market with the scent of mulled wine everywhere. What else can you smell? These things, that's what. And they're going to pair perfectly with your no-wine "mulled wine".


  • Churros
  • Doughnuts
  • Dark chocolate
  • Mince pies
  • Christmas cake
  • Gingerbread
  • Christmas Stollen




If you're serving mulled wine at a Christmas party, you're going to need snacks, nibbles or vol-au-vents. The things we would recommend to go with our alcohol free "mulled wine" are:


  • Mini brie and cranberry tarts
  • Cheese straws
  • Mini cheese muffins
  • Mini pizzas
  • Candied chestnuts
  • Mini mince pies
  • Dark chocolate brownie bites
  • Mini chocolate pavlovas
  • Sweet and salted popcorn


BBC food has a great selection of Christmas Canapé recipes if you are looking for more inspiration.



  • 300 ml Aprtf Bitter Aperitif
  • 40 ml Maple Syrup
  • Cinnamon Stick
  • 2 Star Anise
  • 4 Cloves stuck into two orange wedges
  • 1 Lemon quartered


To garnish:


  • Orange wedge
  • Cinnamon stick
  • Star anise



  1. Add all the ingredients to a saucepan and cook on a medium to low heat at a gentle simmer for 10 minutes
  2. Remove from the heat and let the spices infuse into the "mulled wine" for 30 minutes
  3. Strain out all the ingredients using a sieve
  4. Serve warm, garnished with an orange wedge, cinnamon stick and star anise

Do you have a non-alcoholic creation to share with us? Tag us @ve_refinery on Instagram to be reposted!