At Christmas time we drink much more alcohol than in any other holiday season. Consumption rises 36% on average in December. And “forralt bor” (mulled wine) is one of the most popular alcoholic hot drinks in wintertime. The tipple sold at Christmas markets has a bad reputation: too sweet, too expensive, hardly any alcohol. Luckily, Budapest offers alternatives. Here we present three of them.
Fahéj Kávézó attracts visitors with its rustic, almost antique ambience, and the large selection of winter drinks makes the café a real secret hint for the winter days. The local motto goes: “Pimp my mulled wine!” Since, unlike the interior, the wine is not ancient. They offer red, white and even rosé wine in mulled format. Furthermore you can choose from simple wines, or mulled wine with apple juice, or punch with rum, pálinka or grog. They also think about those guests who have to keep their heads clear or drive after their visit: the drinks card of Fahéj Kávézó presents hot apple juice, hot chocolate and different coffees and teas. The price-performance ratio is also quite right. You will pay no more than HUF 690 for a hot drink.
Address: 19 Semmelweis utca, District V; Open Monday to Friday from noon to midnight, Saturday from 4pm to midnight; www.fahejcafe.hu
Everyone knows that sweet and salty make a good match! The hot-dog sanctuary BudDog also offers self-prepared mulled wine to its guests in the cold season. You can enjoy the drink here in a traditional way, under the blue sky, since BudDog is a food truck. It parks at Rombusz Terasz, a “creative social space” in District IX. You will also find some events for the cold season, for example live music performed in a tent. The mulled wine tastes best with one of BudDog’s home-made one-of-a-kind hotdogs.
Address: 10-12 Ráday utca, District IX; Open Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm, Saturday and Sunday 11.30am to 8pm; www.facebook.com/BudDogFoodTruck
There are also places that fully specialise in the wintertime. Mulled wine season began at Porta on October 31. They offer more than the hot wine that you can taste while tucked in under a blanket in the tent. The restaurant concentrates on all kind of winter drinks that can warm up your body following an evening stroll. You can spice up your cocoa, tea and companions with a good bourbon here. However, Porta is known for its traditional “forralt bor” with a light hot spicy note, and with a view over Szent István Basilica. Although HUF 300 for a decilitre is not that cheap, the quality and the taste correspond to the price.
Address: 16 Zrínyi utca, District V; Open daily from 11am to midnight; www.facebook.com/portapest