Christmas hampers are without doubt one of our favourite ways to gift during the festive season! This guide will give you a range of stunning ideas to help you create the ultimate hand-picked hamper this year. We have everything covered – including delectable drinks, festive treats, cheeseboard ideas and much more! So what are you waiting for, let’s get stuck in!
The Drinks, Tipples and Fizz
Adnams Copper House Dry Gin
How about an award winning gin to kick off your hamper? Crowned the World’s Best Gin at IWSC 2013, Adnams Copper House Dry Gin is a must-buy for any gin fan. Crafted to perfection in East Anglia in copper pot stills, this is an aromatic and very accomplished gin. Distilled six times with a range of botanicals, including juniper, fresh lemon and sweet orange, there is a beautiful balance in every drop. Adnams suggest that this gin is smooth enough for the driest of martinis, but also with enough depth of flavour for a classic gin and tonic. We have to agree!
Adnams Copper House Gin is available from selected retailers, Adnams stores and online at: http://www.adnams.co.uk. RRP £26.99 for 70cl.
Schramsberg 2015 Blanc de Blancs
If you are seeking a top fizz for your hand-picked hamper this year, we would suggest the Californian 2015 Schramsberg Blanc de Blancs. Precise with tiny bubbles and a lemon finish, this is a really great alternative to Champagne and Prosecco this festive season. Full of punchy flavours, such as green apple and candied citrus, this is a truly refreshing and well- balanced offering. Ideal to be served as an aperitif or with seafood (such as sea bass or ceviche), we love the lightness of this Blanc de Blancs. If you were to enjoy a glass of this as Christmas you would be in good company too, as this the Californian sparkling which the White House has served at state banquets since the 1970’s
Pick up a bottle from The Vineyard Cellars, Hedonism wines, Butler’s Wine Cellars or Wood Winters for just £34.
Bolney Bubbly NV
If you would instead like to support a British brand, to be precise, an Award Winning English Sparkling Wine, then Bolney Bubbly is a superb alternative. The Bolney Wine Estate is located on the edge of the South Downs, about 14 miles from the UK’s south coast, and comprises of five unique vineyard sites.
Wonderfully floral and evocative of an English countryside, there are notes of zesty citrus and brioche here. An absolutely wonderful match for Fish, salads, a nice aperitif, soft cheese or Cornish Yarg.
Buy yours for just £23.99 from their website!
Colonna Nespresso Compatible Aluminium Coffee Capsules
Perfect for any coffee lover, Colonna provide some of the world’s best coffees in the very latest capsule technology. Thanks to advances in the science behind coffee capsules and a 100% recyclable capsule design, Colonna can provide you with the very best in boutique coffee production from around the world. The capsules provide you with the freshest coffee by reducing oxygen within the capsules to less that 5%, this ensures a fresh cup every time.
Within the new Colonna range you will find three genres of coffees represented in roast beans, available in filter or espresso form. The diversity of the range and the eclectic mix of terroirs gives each Colonna genre a unique coffee drinking experience. There is an endearing blend of sophisticated and surprising flavours within each cup. To select our favourite, the “rare” genre comes with two variations whether you select short or long capsule types. The short, heralding from the Gallardo family in Panama’s tropical Jurutungo region, packs orange blossom and lychee into every capsule. Whereas the long version comes from Colombia and has a completely different taste profile.
For us, the nuances of the coffee and the sheer quality of the flavour make this a must by for any hamper this Christmas! Prices start from £11 for 20 capsules.
The Cheese and Biscuits
Cheese from Paxton & Whitfield
Established in 1797, Paxton & Whitfield are renowned for their sublime cheeses! Ideal for any luxury hamper, this London based brand produces super high-quality cheeses with a level of finesse you will be hard pushed to find anywhere else. In fact, they are Royal Warrant holders of appointment to Her Majesty the Queen.
We recommend the Paxton & Whitfield Seasonal Collection (£65) this Christmas. This delicious collection caters for all palates and is sure to be a real crowd pleaser! Within the collection you will find their signature Silton PDO. A grade “A” stilton with powerful and rich flavour. Plus, you will also find an award winning 18-month old Montgomery cheddar, a Cerney Pyramid, Brie de Meaux and Monr d’Or. We have been lucky enough to try a range of cheeses from this superb cheesemonger and each one has a wonderful balance and delicate flavour.
Buy yours from the Paxton & Whitfield website.
Sourdough Crispbread Selection from Peter’s Yard
A great pick for foodie fans and the ideal accompaniment to any Christmas hamper, Peter’s Yard have a superb selection of cheeseboard ready crispbreads and biscuits for the festive season.
We particularly love the Sourdough Crispbreads selection for cheeseboards and canapés! In fact, Peter’s Yard Original crispbread was awarded 3 stars at the Great Taste Awards, Top 50 food and described by judges as “the best biscuit for cheese out there”. Therefore, it’s no surprise that we loved them too! The trio of crispbreads include Spelt & Poppy seeds, a gentle partner for mild, crumbly cheeses, such as Wensleydale. Charcoal & Rye, which works wonderfully well with brie and other soft cheeses. Then there is the Peter’s Yard Original, which works as a super all-rounder. Available for £6.95 from Waitrose.
The Chocolate and Treats
Artisan chocolates from Chococo
Chococo, a charming Dorset based producer of stunning artisan chocolates, have the chocolates for Christmas 2018! Chococo’s Christmas Selection Boxes are packed with beautifully decorated and delicious festive chocolates. Plus, Chococo make their choccies fresh, with absolutely no preservative or additives. This gives each chocolate a sense of bursting freshness and vibrancy of flavour you don’t get with other chocolate brands.
In the selection boxes flavours include Tawny Port & Fig (a 2018 Silver Academy of Chocolate Award winner), which blends dried figs steeped in Noval 10-year-old Tawny Port, agave and cinnamon. Plus, there is also Dorset Smoked Sea Salt Caramel, Guava & Coconut Truffle, Salcombe Gin & Pink Grapefruit – to name but a few!
Christmas Selection Boxes start from £16.50 for 16 chocolates, £22 for 25 chocolates or £45 for a tiered stack of 3 boxes containing 50 chocolates! Buy yours here or visit their website to find a local Chococo store!
Mr Trotter’s ‘Alcohol-Inspired’ Candles
A quirky, and yet very welcomed, addition to any festive hamper has to be the brand-new Mr Trotter’s ‘Alcohol-Inspired’ candle range! Mr Trotter’s, winner of this year’s Quality ‘Savoury Snack of the Year’ Award, has created an intriguing trio of candles that are inspired by some of the nation’s favourite beverages!
There really is a candle for every kind of person within this trio – you can now experience an India Pale Ale scented candle, a Gin scented version and the final candle is Whisky inspired! Mr Trotter’s say that their candles are designed to bring a more “masculine” candle offering to the market and we have to applaud them for it! The scent of each candle is actually very pleasant indeed, with the gin candle providing notes of juniper and lemon, therefore evoking a subtle sense of a G & T. Whilst the whisky candle takes influence from an Islay malt and has an earthiness to it that we love. All three of the candles have a superb balance between the aromas of the beverage and the pleasant aroma we all look for in a candle. This is certainly a great addition to any hamper and a unique gift too.
Mr Trotter’s Great British Pork Crunch
Mr Trotter’s also do some of the finest pork crackling snacks you could wish for! Their new British Pork Crunch gives you a lighter bite when it comes to pork crackling snacks. British, bursting with flavour and dangerously moreish!!!
Elizabeth Shaw Christmas Biscuit Selection
The Elizabeth Shaw Christmas Biscuit Selection includes the popular Mint & Cocoa, Coconut & Hazelnut biscuits and a new exclusive pack of White Chocolate & Cranberry Biscuits. Each biscuit is lavishly covered in chocolate, chewy in the centre and absolutely crammed with flavour. Delicious and a must-buy for your hand-picked hamper!
Pick yours up for just £5 from Sainsbury’s or https://www.elizabethshaw.co.uk/.
Festive Jars and Cupboard Essentials
Jam and Chutney from Rosebuds Preserves
Award-winning Rosebud Preserves produce artisan and exquisite been jams, marmalades, chutneys and jellies. What hamper would be complete without one of these festive essentials! Rosebud Preserves source products locally, use time honoured techniques and traditional recipes throughout their range of products.
For Christmas 2018, we recommend their brand-new Somerset Cider Brandy & Pear Jam(227g/£3.75). Bursting with fresh flavour thanks to the English Pears and balanced well with sumptuous Somerset Cider Brandy. Delicious! To accompany your cheeseboard or cold cuts, we recommend the Fig Chutney (£3.60/198g). Deep, rich and warming (thanks to cinnamon running throughout), this is perfect for festive indulgence!
Find out more or buy yours here.
Festive Essentials From Opies
Opies Blackberries with Gin
Opies, which started trading in 1880, is one of the oldest family run food businesses in the UK. This Christmas, they have a couple of must-haves for any hand-picked hamper! Deliciously indulgent, the blackberries are soaked in a light syrup and gin for a fantastic and versatile hamper addition. Have them with cream, ice cream or yoghurt for a rich dessert. Pick them up for £6.99 from Waitrose & Tesco.
Opies Pickled Walnuts and Ginger
Another Christmas hamper essential has to be pickled walnuts! Ideal for those cold cuts or cheeses, this festive favourite from Opies really hits the spot. They are also handy to keep in the cupboard for bakes and stir frys for the rest of the year. Available from all major supermarkets for just £2.99. Opies also do stem ginger, ideal for baking up a festive or winter storm, why not pop a jar of this into your hamper for 2018!
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