Christmas Food & Drink Guide 2015

Paxton & Whitfield Hatchet Knife (£12.50 each)

If you know a cheese lover, then you cannot go wrong with this elegant Paxton & Whitfield Hatchet Knife. By popular demand, this new cheese knife has been developed from the Paxton Pro 3 Piece knife set. This individual knife has a hatchet shaped blade which makes it ideal for cutting harder cheeses that might require a little more pressure when cutting. The extra height of the hatchet knife also makes it easier to cut cheese with more depth.

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Limited Edition Finest English Stilton Jar (£28.00/500g)

We were lucky enough to try some Stilton from Paxton & Whitfield’s and we have to say it is a very, very good cheese. So why not gift a cheese lover you know with this tasty Stilton in a beautiful jar? This new limited edition jar features a two- tone design in blue and white to reflect the blue veining of the cheese, elegant bevelled detailing and a tactile gloss finish. It is hand-filled with a generous portion of the ‘King of Cheeses’ that is creamy with a pleasant herby tang. The cheese is delicious enjoyed with Paxton’s Malted Crackers or some crusty bread, and a glass of Paxton’s Vintage Port or Monbazillac. Once all the cheese has gone the jar can be kept as a keepsake.

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Rosebud Christmas Chutney (£3.40/198g)

Rosebud are renowned for their gorgeous preserves, so we thought it might be helpful to share some of these with you for Christmas. The Rosebud Chrismas Chutney is the perfect place to start – the chutney combines rich prunes, apricots, aromatic allspice and strong dark ale. The result is a delectable wintery flavour with warmth and fantastic flavour. Perfect if you are going to be whipping up a hamper for someone this Christmas. Buy here.

Rosebud Boxing Day Chutney (£3.30/198g)

Another option from Rosebud is this fresh, fruity and subtly spiced Boxing Day Chutney. The flavour is born out of delicious cranberries, Bramley apples and plump raisins.

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Snaffling Pig Co. Gifting Jar – £15.99

Like a lot of men out there, I like to consider myself a connoisseur when it comes to pork crackling. When I read claims of the Snaffling Pig’s crackling being ‘universally loved’, it’s fair to say I had my initial scepticisms. Oh how wrong I was. Every piece was cooked to the point of being crispy but not too hard, and they each have the perfect blend of salt and seasoning to provide an irresistible flavour which doesn’t overwhelm your taste buds or leave you feeling sick afterwards. It’s safe to say you’ll be back for more.

Salt & Vinegar Gifting Jar

The diversity of interesting offerings is astounding, and includes salt & vinegar, BBQ, black pepper, habanero and many more. If you want to wet your whistle whilst pigging down on your crackling, there are even special packs which include a selection of beers or ciders.

Putting the content aside, the 300 grams of porky nourishment is presented in a beautifully tapered Kilmer jar. And what happens when your jar is getting empty? Fear not, for the Snaffling Pig co. offer affordable refills which can be at your doorstep faster than a greased pig! I couldn’t recommend these enough, and they will put a smile on any man’s face. Find out more at www.snafflingpig.co.uk and pick up your first gifting jar for only £15.99.

Chococo Dark Chocolate Coffee Beans Tin (£5.95/75g)

A great little stocking filler, these dark chocolate covered coffee beans are simply wonderful. A tin full of roasted Colombian coffee beans covered in dark Colombian chocolate. Totally delicious, it will be a struggle not to finish these all in one go! I know ours lasted about 10 minutes! Dairy-free and suitable for vegans.

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Chococo Seasonal Selection Boxes (from £9.95 for a box of 9 chocolates)

What better way to treat someone special at Christmas than by giving them a box of Chococo’s freshly handmade chocolates in one of its special Seasonal Selection Boxes? Chococo offers a range of box sizes containing 9, 16 or 25 chocolates. They also offer a “cascade” (3 boxes tied together) of 50 chocolates for a truly indulgent gift. Check out the look of our gorgeous selection below!

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Grand Ferrero Rocher (240g – £5.24, exclusive to Tesco)

What is better than a box of Ferrero Rocher? A giant Ferrero Rocher of course! Within the same deliciously crunchy hazelnut-studded chocolate shell are four individual Ferrero Rocher hidden inside, waiting to be eaten! With their iconic mouth-watering layers combining hazelnut pieces, smooth milk chocolate, a crisp wafer and a crunchy roasted hazelnut wrapped in a velvety filling, Ferrero Rocher is a timeless treat to delight your taste buds. The hazelnut shell is also packed full of Ferrero Rocher flavour and is a delight to eat. A really fantastic stocking filler.

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Lindt Chocolate Decorations (6 x 10g) £3.49

Fancy teasing yourself? Why not add these mini Lindt bears to your tree. These adorable little Teddy decorations will delight your guests and bring a touch of Christmas magic to your home. But be careful, you may not be able to resist eating them before the big day! Available from most Supermarkets.

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Lindt SANTA’S SLEIGH (245g) £8.99

Capture everyone’s imagination with this charming Christmas scene and bring the festive story to life with Santa’s Sleigh. The gift pack contains a 125g Lindt Santa, 100g Lindt Reindeer and two 10g Lindt Teddy, making it the perfect chocolate treat or a beautiful decorative piece for a magical family Christmas.

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Bill’s Bramble Berry Infusion tea (£5.95)

This is the ideal gift for a tea fan. This unique blend of summer and winterberries makes for a delicious and calming infusion for the Christmas season. The blend includes blackcurrants, blackberries, rose hips and strawberries, packed into a pretty pink tin. The taste is wonderfully fruity and yet mellow. RRP: Bramble Berry Infusion, £5.95. The full Bill’s retail range is available at bills-shop.co.uk and in Bill’s restaurants across the UK

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Stelia Nescafe Dolce Gusto Coffee Machine (£149.99)

What could be better than the gift of fabulous coffee all year round? This stunning Stelia coffee machine features intuitive touch screen technology and a simple to use Nescafe Dolce Gusto pod system. This coffee machine is super easy to use, all you have to do is drop in a pod and press the switch. Utilising 15 bar pump pressure, the machine then releases a beautiful stream of coffee. The high coffee shop pressure means you get a velvety cream layer every time with a latter macchiato or just a delicate touch of froth for espressos.

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The machine utilises sealed pods, which mean there is no spillage of ground coffee and no mess. Plus, if there is a small spillage, the Stelia is so easy to wipe down – it’s a really practical treat! I would also add that it is a stunning device, but you will need a bit of work top space to accommodate its ample behind. Well worth the price, we would recommend this as a gift to any coffee lover this Christmas. Simple, elegant and high quality.

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NESCAFÉ® Dolce Gusto® Stelia is available nationwide at the following selected retailers: Argos, Amazon, Dixons, and Littlewoods (including Very, Isme). Stelia is available in three stylish colours – black, silver, white. NESCAFÉ® Dolce Gusto® Pods are available from supermarkets and www.dolce-gusto.co.uk, priced from RRP £3.99 for up to 16 black cups or 8 white cups.

Whittards of Chelsea Luxury White Chocolate Hot Chocolate In A Kilner Tin (£8)

I love, love, love white chocolate and I love hot chocolate! If you are like me, then this absolutely gorgeous luxury white hot chocolate from Whittards of Chelsea is sure to be a hit. Intensely creamy and brimming with buttery sweetness, it’s just what you need after a frostbitten winter’s day – beats thermals when it comes to keeping out the cold. For a bit of après-ski, add an avalanche of whipped cream and marshmallows. Sublimely tasty!

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Anna de Codorníu Blanc de Blancs

We love Codorníu! Their Cava’s are the best and perfect for Christmas drinking. Why not celebrate with a bottle of this limited edition Anna de Codorníu Blance De Blancs for the ultimate Cava experience. Named after Anna de Codorníu, the 17th century heiress of the Codorníu estate, Anna Blanc de Blancs is the most recent addition to Spain’s hugely successful Anna de Codorníu portfolio. In an elegant, limited edition bottle, Anna has refreshing citrus and tropical note. Wonderfully light in flavour, this is ideal for canapés or smoked meats, a truly versatile drink. Anna Blanc de Blancs is available online and from independent retailers throughout the UK.

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Personalised Christmas Wine with Engraved Pewter Christmas Present Wine Label (£32.99)

This bottle of personalised Christmas wine will make a wonderful and unusual Christmas gift for friends, family and colleagues who enjoy wines with summer fruit flavours. Gifts Online 4 U have created a super high quality and beautiful gift wine for the season. The wine gift comes with a 75cl bottle of red, white or rose, with an exclusive, embossed Merry Christmas pewter label. This label displays a Christmas present design attached to the front of the bottle, which can be engraved with your message. Give as Secret Santa gifts, stocking fillers, gifts for family, friends and colleagues, or as corporate Christmas gifts too. The pewter personalisation is probably the nicest wine personalisation we have seen – it’s classy and of fab quality. This is a really worthy gift idea for any wine lover. Available from GiftsOnline4U.

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Veuve Monsigny Champagne Brut by Philizot (Aldi, £9.97)

Aldi is now famous in the UK for supplying low cost but high quality product and brand alternatives, especially at this time of year. With the Veuve Monsigny champagne they have certainly produced another corking (I’m sorry) deal. This champagne has a wonderful golden colour and vibrant bubbles. For under £10 this has to be one of the steals of the season and I would suggest you get some now, just before they run out. Crisp, refined and a joy to drink – yum!

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Reserve du Boulas, Laudun, Côtes du Rhône Villages 2014 (Marks and Spencer, £9.00)

This wine is a lively blend of Grenache Blanc and Clairette with aromas of fresh pears and apples with a hint of lime blossom. It is the perfect wine to add a spring in your step when the air is beginning to turn crisp. Although delicious on its own, it also makes a superb partner for white fish, shellfish, or light chicken dishes. Team with succulent king prawns cooked in garlic butter for a special starter or smoked salmon Bellini canapés at your Christmas party. For those cosy nights in, it makes a zesty accompaniment to a warming curry.

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Tanqueray London Dry Gin (£26.60)

Looking for a top class gin to gift this Christmas? Well, Tanqueray has to be right up there on your shopping list. An enduring classic, Tanqueray® London Dry Gin is loved by bartenders, cocktail lovers and gin aficionados across the globe. With an extra smooth taste, it has an elegance that sets it apart from the rest and a flavour that shines in sophisticated cocktails and vibrant gin and tonics. Tanqueray London Dry Gin £26.60 (1L bottle) at Waitrose or £22.50 (70cl bottle) gift boxed at Alexander and James.

If you are looking for a cocktail to impress with this Christmas, we would recommend The Snowflake Ball:

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Ingredients:

  • 50ml Tanqueray London Dry Gin
  • 15ml lemon juice
  • 15ml lime juice
  • 1Ž2  an egg white
  • 15ml double cream
  • 3 dashes of orange flower water
  • 15ml sugar syrup
  • Cinnamon powder
  • Top with soda

Method – add all ingredients but the soda to a shaker and half fill with cubed ice. Shake! And keep shaking until the ice has nearly all gone – strain into a hiball glass with no ice and top with soda until it begins to foam over the top of the glass. Garnish with cinnamon powder.

 

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