Preheat oven to 180° F. and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Draw a 9-inch circle on the parchment paper by tracing a 9-inch plate upside down. Turn the paper over so the tracing doesn't end up on the Pavlova.
Place the egg whites and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Beat the egg whites on high until firm, approximately 1 minute. Slowly add the sugar to the egg whites and continue beating until stiff, shiny peaks form, approximately 2-3 minutes. Do not overmix.
Remove the bowl from the mixer and sprinkle the egg white mixture with cornstarch, vinegar, and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Carefully fold the ingredients into the egg whites using a rubber spatula. Mound the meringue into the center of the circle on the parchment and spread into a smooth disk. Make a shallow well in the center of the meringue — this will puff up during baking and will ensure you have a marshmallow-y center.
Bake the meringue for 90 minutes and then turn off the oven. Keeping the oven door closed, allow the meringue to cool completely in the oven for an additional hour. It will be crisp on the outside and soft on the inside.
While the meringue is cooling, bring the wine to a boil. Add the mulling spices and the pears to the wine, then turn the heat to low. Simmer for 20 minutes. Carefully remove the pears from the wine and cool on a plate. Add the sugar to the wine and bring to a boil. Boil the wine until reduced by 1/2, approximately 20 minutes, then turn off the heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
In a medium bowl, beat the remaining vanilla, confectioners' sugar and whipping cream with a hand mixer until soft peaks form, approximately 3-4 minutes.
To assemble, place the meringue in the middle of a serving plate. Spread the whipping cream over the top of the meringue and then arrange the pears in the center of the whipped cream.
Drizzle the syrup over the pears and the top of the meringue. Serve immediately.
Pavlova can be made in advance, however, it must be assembled right before serving or the meringue base will begin to soften. Keep the meringue stored in an airtight container for up to 24 hours at room temperature for best results.