Serve Warm Beer This Holiday Season

You may have heard of Glühwein, aka Mulled Wine, before. Christkindlmarkts & Weihnachtsmarkts serve it up steaming in boot-shaped mugs (except in Chicago, we no longer have boot mugs – womp womp). But have you ever heard of Glübier?


Glühwein is typically prepared from red wine, and spiced with warming spices like cinnamon sticks, cloves, star anise, cardamom, and ginger with citrus and sugar or honey. Sometimes even extra liquor is added, with shots of rum, brandy, or other spirits added in. Glühbier is just what you think it is. I’ll wait while you process that.



Yup, warm, spiced beer. There is debate what is the best beer to use as a base for mulled beer. Some people say an ale is best, something not too hoppy. A nice rich brown ale, or English mild. I’ve even had Glühkriek with a Belgian kriek! I’ve heard of lagers used too- again, nothing too hoppy (pilsner is out), but try a bock, doppelbock, or even a dunkel. Throw in citrus, sweetener, spices, and warm it up!


I first heard of Glühbier from a friend of mine working at a great beer bar, naïv, in Frankfurt, Germany. Since I trusted him, I tried it out, and it has now become a staple in my house during the holiday season.


Try it yourself!


Glühbier Recipe
3-16oz cans of beer or 4-12oz bottles or cans of beer (dunkel, bock, doppelbock, brown ale, mild, Kriek, or your choice!)
3 oranges or 2 oranges and 1 lemon, sliced
2 Tbs Honey
2 Tbs Brown Sugar (or to taste)
4 Cloves (whole)
2-4 Allspice berries (whole)
1 Cardamom pod, Green (whole)
1 Cinnamon stick (whole)
1 tsp fresh grated Ginger (optional)
1-2oz Liquor: brandy, cognac, or Kirsch


Add spices*, beer, liquor (if using), sweeteners, and citrus to the pot. Bring to a simmer. Simmer for one hour. Be sure to taste and adjust (more sweet? add honey. less sweet?- then add a touch more liquor!) *Either throw the spices in cheesecloth and tie it up with kitchen string or just throw the spices in the pot with the beer, and strain them out before you serve it!


If you’re really unsure about Glühbier, you can always go the more typical holiday beer route and grab a Spencer Holiday Ale, Two Roads Holiday Ale, Sierra Nevada Celebration, Great Lakes Christmas Ale, or a St. Bernardus Christmas

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