Although port wine is from Portugal, it is very popular in Ireland as well as England. Several drinks can be made with port, including a few well-known Irish cider drinks. There are multiple varieties of port wine, including white port and red port, both of which come in sweet and dry varieties. Before you begin making your cider make sure that you select an appropriate port.
What Type of Port to Use
Varieties of port wine include: tawny port, white port, ruby port, vintage port, late bottled vintage port and single quinta vintage port. Ruby port is preferred for Irish cider. Although you could use a more expensive vintage port or late bottled vintage port for Irish cider, because you will be mixing the port with so many other ingredients you will just want to use a low to mid range ruby port. More expensive vintage ports are typically aged for up to 30 years, so their complexity should be enjoyed without the added ingredients.
About Ruby Port
Ruby port is a bold flavored red port characteristically described as having a berry flavor. The typical aromas from rube port are associated with plum, cherry, strawberry, red apple, cassis liqueur and blueberry. Ruby port is made by blending grapes to make wine and then fortifying the wine with brandy.
Irish Mulled Port
The most popular Irish cider drink made with port is mulled port. To make Irish mulled port you will need the following ingredients: 750 ML of ruby port, 2 cups of water, 1/4 cup of sugar, 2 oranges, 1 cinnamon stick, 12 whole cloves and 1/2 of a teaspoon of each of the following: allspice, mace and nutmeg. Slice and peel the oranges, crush the cloves, bring all of the ingredients, except the port, to a boil in a large sauce pan and simmer on medium for ten minutes. Strain the mixture, return to the pan, add the port, heat without boiling and serve in Irish coffee glasses.
Another common Irish cider-like drink is hot port. To make hot port insert four to six whole cloves into a lemon slice, combine 1 oz of ruby port and one teaspoon of sugar in an Irish coffee glass, add the lemon to the glass and fill with hot water, stir and serve promptly.
Irish Stout Sangria
Irish stout sangria is a less traditional drink, but it is one of the few Irish drinks which incorporates port. To make Irish stout sangria you will need to combine 16 ounces of your favorite Irish stout beer, 1/2 of an ounce of ruby port, 1/2 of an ounce of simple syrup and freshly grated nutmeg and cinnamon to garnish.
There are an endless variety of incredible drinks that can be made with port wine. View some of the resources below for other drink ideas. Remember not to use the good stuff! Fine port is for sipping and you shouldn’t water it down with sugar or other mixers.
- Drinks Mixer: Port Wine-Based Cocktail Recipes
- Drink Swap: Mulled Port Recipe
- Bar None Drinks: Port Drinks
http://www.barnonedrinks.com/drinks/by_ingredient/p/port-729.html Lexio Philes: Irish Winter Warmers
- Magellan Wine: The Different Types of Port Wine
- Drinks Mixer: Mulled Port recipe
- Wine Intro: Port Wine Information
- Catavino: Wanted: Ruby Port Wine; Gabriella Opaz ; November 2007
- Bar None Drinks: Port Drinks