Christmas present ideas for foodies
Foodies can be a hard bunch to buy for – often their cupboards are so full that finding something they haven’t tried is akin to scouring a desert for water. But fear not, for we have searched far and wide for the best gifts, both practical and purely indulgent, for kitchen and dining table dwellers. From new recipes, cocktails and artisan wines to luxury chocolates and even cooking attire, we’ve got you covered this Christmas.
The Dishoom cookbook
The highly acclaimed “Dishoom: From Bombay with Love” is an eccentric and charming cookery book, which takes readers on a day-long tour of south Bombay, peppered with much eating and drinking. Its pages are replete with stories and over 100 recipes to share with all who come to the table. It is an especially good companion to Dishoom’s new Masala Dabba (a traditional spice container). The spices included provide the foundational flavours of many of the best-loved recipes, whilst the signature masalas remove the need for much preparatory work. The spices can be used in endless recipes, ranging from simple snacks and sides such as Gunpowder Potatoes and the Bowl of Greens, to joyous everyday dinners, including House Black Daal, Rajma, Chicken Ruby and Mattar Paneer, to celebratory showstoppers such as Soft-Shell Crab Masala, Jackfruit Biryani and succulent Lamb Raan. The Masala Dabba (£33) and the cookery book (£26) are both available to buy separately, or as a perfect all-in gift for £50 (including a charming Dishoom tote) – though we also recommend pairing with the brand new range of permit room cocktails. All gifts can be ordered now for nationwide delivery to most addresses in the UK mainland via https://store.dishoom.com.
Coravin is the ultimate tool for wine lovers. It’s a sophisticated system that allows you to drink still wines without opening the bottle. A needle sucks the liquid while replacing it with argon gas – one of the most common for culinary purposes – which prevents oxidation: this way you’ll be able to drink the bottle in your own time, even across several months. Models range from the simpler Model One (priced around £150) to the most premium, Bluetooth-enabled Model Eleven (£599): materials improve but the actual preservation system is the same. This tool is so popular amongst experts that most of the world’s best restaurants utilise it to serve rare wines by the glass. You can buy it from online shops as well as Coravin’s website.
Artisan du Chocolat Voyage de Chocolates
It’s hard to go wrong with a chocolate-based gift, but Artisan du Chocolat are taking their indulgent boxes up to the next level with am epic cocoa-inspired adventure. You won’t need a suitcase for this journey – the Voyage de Chocolat long haul trunk has everything you need to just curl up on the sofa and let your tastebuds travel. This monogrammed trunk invites you to buckle yourself in for a long and intense trip along the cocoa route, one that promises to be exciting, surprising, delightful and delicious. Experience six layers of chocolate sensations that are not only a treat for the tongue but a feast for the eyes. At 1kg, the boxes houses around 150 pieces of the brand’s most loved chocolates including fresh couture ganaches, artisan truffles, liquid salted caramels, nutty rochers, incredibly thin filled Os and our moreish chocolate smothered fruit and nuts. These beautifully crafted artisan chocolates are nestled in 6 drawers, hidden in a hinged box closed with a leather-like strap and decorated with a cocoa-inspired monogrammed print. Order a box online today for £95 and we guarantee you’ll no longer be worried about all those missed holidays – you’ll be too busy spending Christmas in paradise for a fraction of the price.
The passionate chef turned fashion designer, Maxine Thompson, has launched her new collection of trousers for the male silhouette, inspired by chefs’ utilitarian clothing: Polka Pants 2.0. To give you some background, over her years in the kitchen, Australian-born, London-based chef Maxine Thompson found herself frustrated at the unbecoming trousers she and her fellow female cooks had to wear, so she began sketching the ideal female chef trouser – one designed for functionality and comfort, but also for style. This autumn, PolkaPants launched a new collection, a spin on the classic male trouser shape: mid-rise, straight leg, with a nod to the 1940’s silhouette of the original PolkaPants. Polka Pants ambassadors include chefs James Lowe of Lyle’s and Flor, Mitshel Ibrahim of Ombra (pictured below), Nick Fitzgerald of Tacos Padre, Gizzi Erskine and others. Not just for the chef, PolkaPants are for those who want to feel comfortable and confident in their every day. With the second line of the collection now fitting to a male silhouette, the PolkaPants community has expanded further and delivers internationally.
Checkmate Artisanal Wines
CheckMate wines are now available for the first time in the UK. Meticulously handcrafted under the watchful eye of Australian-born winemaker, Philip McGahan, these small lot Chardonnay and Merlot are some of the most highly scored wines in Canada – earning more than two hundred +90 point scores, including the first-ever back-to-back perfect 100-point scores for a Canadian table wine. With each vintage, the quality and character of these wines continue to improve as McGahan painstakingly studies and researches rows within family-owned Estate vineyard sites to produce defined micro-blocks, each a pure expression of the soil and the unique microclimates that define the Okanagan Valley. This is the extreme edge of winemaking, the “Next World” of fine wine. We particularly recommend the 2014 Fool’s Mate chardonnay. This is an extremely complex wine bringing fruity flavours of peach and apricot, as well as sweet nutty notes of almond croissant. It maintains richness throughout its length, backed by fresh acidity and a salty finish. With a minimalist chessboard design, the bottle also looks the part on any wine rack. Check out the whole collection on the Iconic Wineries of British Columbia website. Order from the site for complimentary postage and packaging, or alternatively, purchase a bottle at £65 from Hedonism Wines, Mayfair.
Double Dutch Gin & Tonic Crackers
This festive season, Double Dutch has partnered with six different gin distilleries to create a variety box of crackers sure to impress your guests and keep spirits high this Christmas. Each cracker contains a double shot of gin by some of the UK’s favourite brands and is perfectly paired with a Double Dutch mixer for a bespoke Christmas G&T. From classic gin & tonic lovers to those looking for a more delicate or exciting twist on the classic drink, the Double Dutch Gin & Tonic Crackers have a drink for everyone. Each set includes: Whitley Neill Parma Violet Gin, The Lakes Elderflower Gin Liqueur, Edinburgh Gin’s Raspberry Gin Liqueur, Sipsmith London Dry Gin, Warner’s Rhubarb Gin and Aber Falls Orange Marmalade Gin. Which one will you choose this Christmas? The limited-edition crackers are available to purchase from doubledutchdrinks.com/shop and are the perfect accompaniment for your Christmas dinner or as a gift for loved ones.
Talisker Sea Salted Caramel Gift Set
Talisker, the multi-award-winning whisky, is offering an array of indulgent gifts for wild spirits this Christmas. Famed for its sea-salty nose, smoky character and peppery finish, Talisker captures and tells the story of the remote and rugged environment where it is made. Distilled at the oldest working distillery on Skye, which is battered by the elements, Talisker transports whisky drinkers to a world of adventure. This Christmas the brand has partnered with Edinburgh based artisan chocolatier, COCO, to create the Talisker Sea Salted Caramel Gift Set, the perfect gift for chocolate and whisky lovers alike. The Talisker Sea Salted Caramels are made using sea salt from the Isle of Skye, reflecting the rugged elements of the homeland of Talisker, offering a smoky, salty bite of the dramatic coastline. The Talisker Sea Salted Caramels pair perfectly with the powerful and complex character of Talisker 10 Year Old, with its sweet malt and fruit notes.The Talisker Whisky Salted Caramel Gift set will be available to purchase for consumers via Malts.com and CocoChocolatier.com for £20.
NIO X The Singleton Plus Two Collection
The Singleton of Dufftown, a single malt like no other, has partnered with NIO Cocktails to create a limited-edition collection of its ready-to-drink cocktails, delivered straight through your letterbox, to kick off your Christmas and New Year celebrations in style. The NIO Cocktails X The Singleton Plus Two Collection is a set of four ready-to-savour cocktails and is the ultimate gift for those who want to simply add ice and enjoy bar quality cocktails in the comfort of their own home. This convenient letterbox collection is sent directly to the recipient and is perfect for (virtual!) get-togethers and festive celebrations. The NIO X The Singleton Plus Two Collection is a suite of cocktails that marry the delicious taste of The Singleton of Dufftown with two further flavours: The Singleton Plus Two Colada, The Singleton Plus Two Fashioned, The Singleton Plus Two Bramble and The Singleton Plus Two Sour. NIO Cocktails X The Singleton Plus Two Collection is available to order online for £29 including postage and packaging.
The Tanqueray Table Wreath
This Christmas, Grace & Thorn have joined forces with Tanqueray, the timeless premium gin, to create The Tanqueray Table Wreath. Designed for the ultimate luxury drinks experience and to create a stunning centrepiece, this beautiful wreath is embellished with garnishes and botanicals inspired by Tanqueray Gin. Not only does this table-wreath look great, but it can be used to create amazing Tanqueray cocktails too. The Tanqueray Table Wreath is centred around a bottle of Tanqueray London Dry Gin and comes with a beautiful booklet offering a series of delectable cocktail recipes featuring both the classic Tanqueray London Dry Gin, as well as the delicious Tanqueray Flor de Sevilla, made with orange essences. The table wreath features botanicals used in the crafting of Tanqueray as well as garnishes which can be picked and added to chosen cocktails to drink in style at home as you get into the Christmas spirit. To experience this timeless gin in a unique way this festive season, the Tanqueray Table Wreath is available to purchase here and comes with a gifted bottle of Tanqueray London Dry.
The editorial unit