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Enjoy With
Gowan's 1876 Heirloom Cider
Gowan's Sierra Beauty Heirloom Cider

This largely British and German tradition means 'to your health,’ or ‘Waes hall’ in German, and was traditionally served with toast floating in it.


During January in the cider-producing west of England, wassailers would visit orchards on the Twelfth Night of Christmas and sing to the health of the oldest apple tree in the orchard. This was said to ensure thriving trees, a good harvest, and more hard apple cider.

Wassail Song

Here's to thee, old apple tree,

That blooms well, bears well.

Hats full, caps full,

Three bushel bags full,

An' all under one tree. Hurrah! Hurrah!

Traditional Wassail

Ingredients: 11
Serves: 6-8


  • 4 bottles (500mL each) Gowan’s 1876 Heirloom or Sierra Beauty Heirloom Cider

  • 4 small apples, Sierra Beauty or Jonathan apples

  • 1/4 cup unrefined cane sugar

  • 1 medium orange

  • 13 whole cloves

  • 1/2 cup brandy

  • 1 tbsp powdered ginger

  • 1 tsp grated nutmeg

  • 6 allspice berries

  • 2 cinnamon sticks

  • 6 large eggs, separated

  • Optional: Toast, to serve with


  1. Preheat the oven to 350º F.

  2. Scoop out the core of the apples with a melon baller, careful not to penetrate the apple.

  3. Fill each apple with about a tablespoon of unrefined cane sugar and place on a baking sheet.

  4. Stud an orange with the whole cloves and place it on the baking sheet with the apples. Bake together for 40 minutes.

  5. Combine the cider and brandy in a heavy-bottomed stock pot and warm over moderately low heat. Whisk in powdered ginger and grated nutmeg. Do not bring to a boil.

  6. Place allspice and cinnamon in spice satchel and put into the wassail as it warms. Do not bring  to a boil.

  7. Beat egg yolks until light in color and set aside.

  8. In a separate bowl, whip egg whites until stiff peaks form.

  9. Fold egg yolks into whites, then temper by slowly pouring 1/2 cup wassail into the eggs.

  10. Remove the spice sachet from the wassail and pour in the tempered eggs. Transfer to a punch bowl.

  11. Float the baked apples and orange in the wassail and serve by the mug, topping each much with a small slice of toast if desired. Cheers!

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