During the festive season, celebrants throughout Europe enjoy a common tradition: a glass of hot, spiced wine. The tradition has deep historical roots, as the winter appreciation of warmed wine followed the expansion of the Roman empire into northern Europe. The spice trade of the Middle Ages brought the exotic flavourings of ginger, cloves, nutmeg, cardamom, and cinnamon into the market. Expensive delicacies, these spices were adapted for winter celebrations, proved perfect complements to warmed wine, and continue to provide the culinary vocabulary for the holidays. Regional variations have developed over the years—notably in England, Scandinavia, Central Europe, and the Balkans. At Annabelle, our Christmas Wine takes on a distinctly Cypriot flair. We use Plakota dry red wine, a blend of red grape varieties (including some indigenous to Cyprus) produced locally by Vouni Panayia winery. To this we add calvados cider brandy and Filfar, an orange liqueur made only in Cyprus. Cinnamon, the aromatic bark indigenous to India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Myanmar, adds Christmas spice to the concoction in both powder and syrup form. The glass is garnished with apple extract, a slice of orange, and a cinnamon stick. You can enjoy Annabelle’s Christmas Wine at our Christmas Market, which takes place in our Atrium on 21, 26, and 30 December from 15:30 to 17:30. Nibble on homemade Christmas cookies, gingerbread, and chocolates as you view the wares of local merchants, including pottery and Christmas cards.