I used to think that mulled cider was the perfect Halloween party drink. It's festive and seasonal, easy to make in large batches, and everyone loves it. Still, every year I'm proven wrong— I've had entire boiling vats of cider knocked over, burn victims to tend to, forgotten pots left to simmer indefinitely, melted ladles, and singed costumes... and aside from all that trouble, who wants to repeatedly run into the kitchen to brew up another pot of cider? My guests tend to come thirsty, and seldom patient.
This year I've vowed to go cold. No sachets of mulling spices for me! This recipe for chilled cider punch combines the fall flavors of a mulled cider with the celebratory feel of a sparkling punch. (It's also the perfect excuse to break out that vintage punch bowl that's been sitting unused in my pantry closet.)