My first of just two gift guides this year is a shout out to my foodies. A foodie gift guide, to a degree. Whilst I don’t talk about it a lot on my blog (with the exception of some very old recipe posts), I am a big fan of testing out new food and drink. I spend a lot of time in the kitchen testing new recipes, and I’m always partial to a glass of wine or two. I actually end up getting a lot of food and drink related gifts, so I’m sharing what I’d be after this year…if I didn’t already have them.
Okay, so this is mostly drink related and it’s going to make it look like I’m an even bigger fan of alcohol than I am, but it’s Christmas! Just please remember to drink responsibly over the festive period, and let’s crack on with the foodie gift guide.
It’s not Christmas if you don’t put a sprout or two on your plate. Personally I’m a sprout lover and have already eaten a ton this year (fried in butter with bacon is the best way to eat them in my opinion), but for those who aren’t such lovers you could always treat them to some chocolate sprouts. I’ve seen these all over the place this year, starting at £3.50 going right the way up to £15. The most realistic ones I’ve seen are these Choc On Choc Chocolate Sprouts* for £9.99, and you have it on good authority – my authority – that’s these are pretty delicious. Buy your sprouts here.
This year I picked up a few new Christmas cookbooks which I’ll be sharing with you in a post later in the month, but a book that I think will make a wonderful gift for foodies is one I treated myself to last month. Nigel Slater’s The Christmas Chronicles is a beautifully written book, which include seasonal recipes as well as a history of Christmas. I’m going to be talking about it a little more in my Christmas cookbook collection, but this is a must have for foodies this year. Buy The Christmas Chronicles here.
Onto the good stuff (where my foodie gift guide becomes one for the drink lovers). Christmas requires a little bit of lubrication in the form of alcohol, whether you’re adding it to your Christmas puds, starting your day with a bottle of Bucks Fizz or curling up with a Hot Toddy at the end of the day. I’ll be sharing a Hot Toddy recipe towards the end of the month, but for now I’m sharing a few drink gifts that I know quite a few people in my life would appreciate
I love Christmas decorations, and trimming the tree is one of the best parts of Christmas. These The Lakes Distillery Gin Baubles* (RRP £34.99) are the perfect gift for those who love gin (whether that be the traditional spirit, or they’re more of a sloe fan), and they can even decorate the tree. Sneak a cheeky tipple whilst you’re decorating and buy them here.
Have you got a gin lover in your life who you don’t quite want to stretch to £35 on? Why not pick up a Gin In A Box from Gin Festival. For £5, a gin miniature and tonic are yours, complete with a gin goblet. Perfect for Saturday nights in with a Christmas film when you don’t fancy another mulled wine. You could even treat them to tickets to their local gin festival if you were feeling really generous! Tickets for the gin festival, and the different varieties of Gin In A Box can be bought here.
When I was at the gin festival a couple of weeks ago, I bought myself the Pinskter Boozy Berries. Raspberries infused in gin make the perfect gin garnish or prosecco additive, so even if you know someone who loves jazzing up their drink, these can be bought here for just £6.99. You can even use them like you would any other raspberry, such as in cakes or with ice cream: give your pud a little kick. Pinkster also sell Gin Jam which I’ve definitely got my eye on! Imagine starting your weekend with a slice of toast with gin infused jam. Yes please!
Another wonderful drink additive, specifically for prosecco, are the Pop A Ball Bubbles For Prosecco*. I’ve tested out the blueberry shimmer and despite not loving blueberry flavour, these are so fun! The Pop A Ball Shimmer For Prosecco* also adds some fun to prosecco and cocktails, and both of these make a cute addition to a bottle of prosecco that you may or may not be gifting. I mean, I’ll be I’m definitely going to be getting some more of these for Christmas and New Year (we’re big prosecco fans in my family) to jazz up my drinks. Is it a celebration if you don’t have a pimp your prosecco bar? These can both be picked up from Lakeland, but I’ve also seen a few sets in Tesco and Amazon so keep your eye out.
Books aren’t just for food recipes, and over the past year I’ve acquired a few cocktail books. The Periodic Table Of Cocktails was a Secret Santa gift that I got last Christmas, and organises popular cocktails in a periodic table to help decide which drinks you’ll love. This books made me want to get a bar cart more than anything, and when I have my own house (aka the space to do it), that’s exactly what I’m having. This book is available here, and there’s also a wine version I’ve got my eye on.
I’m a give fan of the Fever-Tree Elderflower Tonic, and after trying a whole host of their cocktails at the Eat & Drink Festival last month (a post all about it is coming very soon), I picked up the Fever-Tree: The Art Of Mixing book. I was expecting this to be mainly gin based, but there’s a huge variety of long drinks and cocktails to create with recipes from the world’s leading bars, including some that may be local to you. A great little gift that I know I’ll be having a great time using, available here.
The final cocktail books in my stash that makes a fab little gift is Prosecco Made Me Do It, full of sparkling cocktails and wonderful illustrations. Every single cocktail in this book uses the well-loved sparkling wine, giving a bit of This Christmas I’m definitely going to be trying out the Mimosa Sud and the Grown Up Lemonade. You can even add the edible glitter I talked about early for an extra Christmas sparkle! Pick this book up alongside a little bottle of prosecco for an extra special gift.
And if in doubt, why not buy a bottle for your nearest and dearest? I’m white drinker, but always keep a couple of each about for the Christmas season. Emergency gifts will always crop up! Gallo Family Vinyards have two non-sparkling options for the Christmas table, and nothing beats a little tipple with food at Christmas. The Gallo Family Vineyards Merlot* has flavours of dark fruits and raspberries, and is the perfect accompaniment to a cheese board or indulgent chocolate desserts. The Gallo Family Vineyard Pinot Grigio* is a fruitier wine, with citrus and melon flavours, and matches the fish dishes we love to serve over Christmas. I’m all about the smoked salmon as a started on Christmas Day. Both these wines are available at your local supermarket, so keep an eye out.
What a full out gift guide this turned out to be. Over 1000 words, whoops! Hopefully this has given you some gift inspirations, or at least some table ideas. My foodie gift guide definitely turned into more of a drinks guide guide, but hey, everybody loves a tipple or two!