January 2011

JANUARY 2011: Wine Talk

Author: Krissy Cantelupe

BRRRR it’s cold outside. Since we’ve just experienced a colder-than-usual December, I chose some great libations to keep us warm and cozy in January. Head inside, get out of the coat and scarf, whip off the gloves and check out these delicious cocktails.

CAPTAIN MORGAN SPICED TEA

If you have a congested head, cough, and/or are just feeling plain awful, this great little drink is sure to make you feel better. Head to the herbal tea section of your grocery store; try a green tea for less caffeine or even a decaffeinated tea if this is a nightcap. I prefer a quality black tea without additional flavoring. Brew the tea in hot water; after steeping, pour into a mug with 2 oz. of Captain Morgan Spiced Rum. Then add the juice of a freshly squeezed lime or orange for that extra vitamin C kick. Relax. Sip slowly and let the hot tea warm you from the inside out.

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HOT BUTTERED RUM

2 cups of water
1/2 stick unsalted butter
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
1/4 tsp. cloves
1/8 tsp. salt
2/3 cup Myers’s Dark Rum.

Over moderately high heat, bring to a boil the water, butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt. Reduce heat and simmer, whisking occasionally for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, pour into mugs and finish with rum in each mug. Garnish with a cinnamon stick. Myers Dark Rum is my favorite as white rums don’t have as much flavor.

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BUBBLES MAKE YOU FUZZY AND WARM

Yes, that is true. Bubbles do make you feel fuzzy, especially in your head. I recommend some sparkling wine such as Martini and Rossi Asti. Then, to make it even more delicious and heartwarming, muddle some fresh cranberries in a separate bowl with some freshly squeezed orange juice. This will make a chunky little relish which you place into a champagne flute and top with the Asti. The cranberry and orange will warm your spirits.

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OF COURSE RED WINE MAKES YOU FLUSHED

…Especially if you are drinking a glass in front of a cozy fire. I would recommend a big, hardy Cabernet Sauvignon. The hardy tannins and full body will keep you warm, plus if you are anything like me, you will get nice, glowing red cheeks, like you just stepped in from a windy night. One of my favorites is Uppercut Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley. This is a brand new Cabernet that was introduced in South Carolina about a month ago. Not only do I love the flavors of smooth blackberry, black cherry, toffee and cocoa, but I love the fact that it pairs so well with steaks, pot roasts, and other warm winter fare.

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