For both recipes you prepare as follows. Place all spices and vodka/cognac in a glass jar overnight. Strain the liquid. Mix wine, vodka/cognac and sugar in a saucepan. Heat very slowly until hot and the sugar has dissolved. Make sure that the brew does not boil. Serve in small cups or mugs with raisins and peeled almonds.
Recipe courtesy of Hakan Swahn, Aquavit, New York City