COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI)-It started hundreds of years ago in the south of England to encourage a good apple harvest. Residents of small villages would gather and sing and drink their own special apple cider concoctions. Since then, the Wassail tradition has become associated with the Christmas season around the world. Some like it hot, some prefer it cold. Some say you have to start with apple cider, others prefer some kind of punch.
“Wassail is kind of similar to cider but its more like a warm punch. It’s lots of spices and juices. Everyone has their own recipe so we are all just coming up with our own concoctions warming those up and we will see who the winner is,” says Corie Walters.
Cory Walters says since this is their first year participating in the Wassail competition, they want to get a head start on their recipe.
“Well we have been working on a recipe since before Thanksgiving. And we started Wednesday night actually preparing the stuff for tonight,” says Walters.
Over 30 businesses are showing off their best wassail recipe including last year’s winner Bella Derma who is confident in placing again this year.
“Of course we would love for everyone to enjoy our wassail again just as much as they did last year,” says Brittany Herris.
The staff at Bella Derma offers a unique type of wassail for the adults and kids.
“Completely organic with all fresh local ingredients and we have organic wine and brandy and then we have one for the tiny tots that is a little more kid friendly,” says Herris.
No matter whose recipe comes out on top, competitors says its mostly about enjoying the company of new faces.
“We are just excited to see the people. Like I said we love seeing growth, we love seeing people come in our store. We are proud of Columbus and downtown,” says Walters.
“Getting to meet everybody. We really enjoy getting have new people come in and see what we have to offer as a spa,” says Herris.
Wassail Fest goes until 8 tonight.
All participants are asked to voted on the which wassail recipe they like the best. The Wassail Meister Award will be presented next week.