mulled wine recipe

It’s Mulled Wine time of year and I cannot fail to remember the times we used to prepare cauldrons of it to hang on a tripod in the hotel courtyard and wait for our cold guests to return after a day skiing on the pistes. A recipe for mulled wine that goes back a century and is still as satisfying today.

Mulled wine dolomites

The sight alone of the tripod with it’s log fire under the cauldron is enough to make you smile and as the guests arrived they’d gather around and accept a small cup of mulled wine allowing it to warm them up from head to toes.

mulled wine

Chatter would commence, stories of the day’s skiing, funny things that happened, achievements that were made, who had mastered the snowplough and who had attempted a black run for the first time.

Laughter could be heard as people relayed how their partner had ended up skiing backwards or completely misunderstood the ski instructor with embarrassing consequences

These were the moments of the holiday that sealed our guest’s love for our hotel, Club Hotel Alpino and our resort Folgaria, after a few glasses of mulled wine they’d head up to their rooms to get changed and later the conversation would flow easily as a bond had been made.

So when I see bottles of Mulled Wine for sale in the supermarkets, these are the memories I am filled with, good times.

mulled wine tripod

Lindeman’s Shiraz

However, we used to make our own and it is so simple. Lindeman’s have a delicious Shiraz that suits this recipe perfectly and seeing as the grapes are grown in the hot Australian sun you are adding good health and sunshine to your mulled wine too. Throw a couple of steaks on the barbie!

It’s good for you!

In case you needed an excuse to treat yourself to a delicious glass of mulled wine then please take note of the medicinal qualities of some of the ingredients…

Lindeman’s Shiraz – adds sunshine to your drink

Cinnamon stick – Antiflu properties

Cloves – antibacterial

lemon – antiseptical and good for the respiratory system

Orange – vitamin C

Apple – 1 a day keeps the doctor away

As if you needed that excuse! Cin Cin! as they say in the Dolomites.

 

Recipe for Mulled Wine from the Dolomites
 
Prep time
Cook time
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A recipe for Mulled Wine direct from the Dolomites to warm you from head to toe.
Author:
Recipe type: Drinks
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 1 bottle of red wine, Lindeman's Shiraz
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 100g sugar
  • 5 cloves
  • 1 orange, sliced
  • 1 apple, sliced
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
Instructions
  1. Place all of the ingredients in a pan and heat slowly until it is warm but not too hot.
  2. Serve in small cups or mugs.
All photos of vin brulé in Folgaria at Club Hotel Alpino with the kind permission of my daughter in law Oana Dascalul

Find more information on Club Hotel Alpino, the perfect family friendly hotel in the Dolomites.

Find more information on Folgaria

socrates quote change

I was reminded of something today, that change is necessary if you want to evolve and get better and it’s only by taking a step back and taking a long hard look at your work that you see where you have gone wrong, that you spot where you can improve and you can see what fails and what works.

Blogging

Blogging is a funny old business to be in, I think if you ask any blogger they will tell you that since they started, their blog has been the weirdest journey of their life.

What started out for many, me included, as a hobby or pastime quickly became a way of life, a passion that couldn’t be quenched and then on to a means of earning money.

The other thing about blogging is the more you dig the more you find and the more there is to learn, it is a relatively new area to be in along with social media so there is no fixed formula, it’s a dive in and do it job. It’s constantly evolving and there are always new things to do. If you’d told me about HTML code and links and editing photos 4 years ago I would have looked at you quite blankly. But I know more about it now and although some stuff is really heavy going, other bits I can tackle now.

macbook air

I spend part of my time per week visiting other blogs, reading their work and commenting, I pick up excellent tips from them, I spot things I like and others I don’t like then I go back and take a good look at Mari’s World and ask myself what can be done to make this better?

A new look, I thought.

After all who doesn’t like to get their hair done or buy something new to wear to lift their spirits? So I got the Geek Fairy in to wave her wand and although it’s not complete I am liking this new look, just a little more housekeeping and Mari’s World will be ready for the next chapter of her book, whatever that may be.

Not content with just a new look I’ve been brain-waving a lot recently – it’s exhausting me and I hope the phase is soon complete because my poor brain is starting to pop and fizzle out BUT of the hundreds of ideas that came forward – and some were pretty rubbish trust me – I have started a new blog with my daughter Megan. 

Folgaria News

It’s a new idea, I haven’t seen anything like it before so I’m stabbing in the dark and trying to create something special. It could totally backfire on me – I hope it doesn’t but I’ve got to try, haven’t I?

Folgaria News a bilingual blog written both in English and Italian and it’s all about Folgaria, the mountain village I lived in for almost 20 years. It’s written from two points of view; mine – in English and Megan’s in Italian.

Folgaria News blog

Folgaria is a sleepy town of 3000 but it’s main trade is tourism which boosts the village up to 30,000. Summer holidays in the fresh mountain air and skiing in the winter, thousands and thousands of people pass through every single year from all over Europe, many come back time and time again but think of all the people who have never heard of it?

The concept is simple, reach as many people as we can, tell them what is happening in Folgaria. Create an archive of information, photos, fun and inspiration. Create a place that a visitor to Folgaria can search and come up with ideas on what to do tonight, for a day trip, on holiday IN TWO LANGUAGES.

I think this has legs, I’m going to push on with it and see where it takes me.

Awards

I’ve asked you once before but a gentle reminder as voting is over as of this Friday the 16th and I’d love to be amongst the finalists for the Family category of the BiBs. It would give me something to show for the four long years I’ve sat typing away at my laptop, it would make all those dreadful early posts where I was learning my trade worth it. It would also make my day. Please click on the badge below, it will take you to the Survey and Mari’s world is in the Family Category, thank you.

BiB2014familyVote

It’s that time of year again, I’m off to see my big kiddos in Italy for the weekend. I am leaving the twins behind with daddy and I catch a plane at 8 and not back till Monday.

A flying visit in every sense of the word.

aeroplane in clouds

Today (Friday) I have been packing, actually I’ve been packing for months, or rather putting things to one side for the day I go to Italy. This is mainly toys that the twins are growing out of, or presents I’ve picked up through the months, bits and pieces that I think someone in my family will appreciate. I am always doing this.

baggage

 

Trouble is this time round, I have had a major clear out in the twins room and lots of the toys are perfect for Evan. Why trouble? Well they are all big and bulky and therefore way too expensive to post, have you seen the prices to send abroad? Madness.

So I have the biggest suitcase I can put my hands on filled to the hilt with toys, books and puzzles, a snow white dress and a cup cake carrier (oldest daughter).

Jay Emme photography - Evan chocolate

Photo Credit: Jay Emme Photography

 

As the case passes through customs, will they stop it and think I have a cunning plan? Or will they simply think I am nuts? Who in their right mind goes to Folgaria with a case of toys?

Anyway, you know what this really means don’t you? It means I have an EMPTY suitcase on my return journey. It means I may just have to pop in and see my friend in the Benetton shop doesn’t it? It means that whilst we’re in Lake Garda ….

Have a wonderful weekend all :)

Trentino mountain

 

In Italy the kids have already broken up from school and won’t go back till mid September – I know think of the childcare that has to be in place for that! – As you know Italy is a hot country; summers can reach constant 40C on a daily basis for months. It’s not unheard of for people to drag their mattresses to the balconies at night and sleep there where there is a filo d’aria, a thread of air.

This is why the stunning mountain ranges in Italy, like the Dolomites, are a popular holiday choice for Italians, a kind of holiday I would have ignored had I not lived there for 20 odd years. Italian families will book to spend as much time as possible up in the fresh air and green pastures of le montagne, so what do they do when they ‘Vado in montagna‘ I’m going to the mountains?

Here are 10 things I would do if I was to visit this summer

Top Ten things to do in the Italian Dolomites this summer

  1. Eat. From dining like royalty in one of Trentino’s Magnificent 7 Michelin starred restaurants or a wholesome and delicious peasant’s meal in one of the many Alpine refuges dotted across the mountain tops. One things for sure you will feast on fresh locally made cheeses, hams, wild mushrooms and your life won’t be complete until you have tried Canerderli or Strangolaprete – trust me. Here’s my review of Rifugio Rumor for a better idea.
  2. Drink. Trentino is the home of Mozart’s favourite wine, Marzemino, it also boasts Italy’s top sparkling wine “metodo classico” Trentodoc and you cannot leave without trying a Gewurztraminer or a San Leonardo wine either. Grappa usually finishes off the best meals but be warned it is strong. Attend a wine tasting or visit one of the many vineyards.
  3. Visit a fairytale castle. Trentino is brimming with them dating back hundreds of years, my personal favourites are Castello Buonconsiglio in Trento, Castel Beseno which sat at the bottom of my mountain home of Folgaria, Castel Thun, Castel Stenico and Castello di Avio.castle
  4. Get some culture. Visit MART museum of modern art in Rovereto and see futurist artist Depero on display amongst many others. I would love to visit the MUSE science museum opening on 27th July and designed by Renzo Piano who designed London’s famous Shard building. MUSE begins with the local and extrapolates from that. The museum aims to follow the precepts of glocal: act locally, think globally
  5. Get fit. Cycle the Dolomiti Lagorai Bike Grand Tour six-day mountain-bike itinerary. Too sporty? Then how about the new European-wide electric bike scheme called Movelo in Valsugana? This is something new I’d like to have a go at.
  6. Music. Enjoy the beauty of your surroundings against one of nature’s most magnificent backdrops whilst listening to music. The Sounds of the Dolomites run from the end of June to the end of August.
  7. Lakes. There are over 300 in Trentino! Enjoy sailing, windsurfing, rafting or canyoning if you’re looking for an adrenalin rush. My local lake was Lago di Lavarone where many a lunch break was spent on it’s gentle shores and I never said no to a trip to Lago di Garda a short 40 minutes away.lake garda
  8. Photography. Whatever you do don’t forget your camera. Trentino will blow you away with its scenery, pack lots of SD cards.
  9. Folgaria. My home for almost 20 years. Have a brioche in Club Hotel Alpino or visit the spa at Hotel Eghel, tell them I sent you ;)
  10. Shop. You are in Made in Italy land, the fashion will blow your mind, the art, the design, the food, the leather, the ceramics. BUY because it will remind you for years to come of the fabulous time you had.

Argghh. Now talking about it has made me want to go back *puts thinking cap on and starts to plan* for more info here’s the official tourist board of Trentino website

newborn baby sleepingIt’s time for another flying visit to Trentino, my favourite place in Italy as Evan is going to be christened this weekend and I am going to be there.

It’s with mixed feelings that I leave as on one hand I must leave Paul and the twins behind in the UK but on the other I shall be free to enjoy Tommy and Megan and their families without any distractions. Of course I wish I could share the lovely things I will see and do with all of my family together but needs must so excuse me whilst I get very excited all over again.

My suitcase is stashed to the hilt with toys for Gracey, presents for Evan, lots of clothes for me as I can’t make up my mind what to take and it looks like rain too but of course my few belongings will rattle around empty on my return trip on Monday.

I’m taking my camera, my video camera and my laptop with me plus my brand new G Drive slim where I have now transferred all of my iPhoto library, you know I never used to be this gadget orientated but look at me now how I move country..

The autumn is a great time for wild mushrooms in Trentino and I hope to fit in a risotto or side order of funghi. I also have a pizza high up on my list, a Crodino which you never see here, an espresso (proper one) some mountain photography if the weather plays ball and a slice of strudel. They also make a wicked Sacher torte.

Folgaria in pictures

It’s big wine season too and I shall do my best to try a Marzemino which is typical to the area of Trentino, a Pinot Grigio, a Pinot Nero and a must-have Gewurztraminer. You know when I lived out there, I did the first course on my way to being a somelier and we used to hold wine tastings for our hotel guests.

I shall be visiting the ‘kids’ in the Alpen Eghel hotel and I’ve been booked in for a manicure on Sunday morning.

folgaria night

I shall meet with my best mate and chat too much, drink too much and probably spend too much in her Benetton shop too but it’s got to be done, a fill up until next time we meet which will most likely be the wedding in March.

Don’t know if you can tell but I am really looking forward to being there and you’ll hear all about it on Tuesday, love to all and have a great weekend – I will!