20 luxury food and drink treats to enjoy this Christmas – UK & Europe edition


Christmas is a time to treat yourselves a little… to spend time with family, friends and some unforgettable food and drink… that’s all you need for a truly unforgettable Christmas, isn’t it?! This year, to make Christmas extra special, we’ve rounded up some festive food and drink treats to allow you to truly indulge – from the finest smoked salmon to turkeys fit for Royalty, and much, much more besides.

Desserts Collection from Lily O’Brien’s

Spread the festive cheer with Lily O’Brien’s Desserts Collection – a mouth-watering assortment of delicious Dessert chocolates inspired by six much-loved dessert recipes from across the globe including Banoffee Pie, Lemon Posset, Hazelnut Torte, Crème Brûlée, Raspberry Infusion and Key Lime Pie. Yule be sorry if you don’t get your hands on these. So, snap up Lily O’Brien’s Desserts Collection from all major supermarkets now (RRP: £7) and share wisely as you reunite with your loved ones this year for the greatest gift of all.

Sashimi-Grade Smoked Salmon from London Smoke & Cure

Farmed in clear waters off Shetland and Orkney, London Smoke & Cure‘s best seller and now winner of several quality awards including multiple Great Taste Awards and Best Smoked Salmon category winner in the 2021 Good Housekeeping awards, has freshness at its haert and they start working with it just 16 hours after harvest. They cure their salmon with a simple blend of salt, juniper and sugar for a shorter time than is typical, giving an elegant result.

Unlike most smoked salmon which are now racked for smoking, it is traditionally rope-hung which allows some of the natural oils to be released. This in turn improves the product texture. It is then under-smoked so as not to hide the superior quality fish, keeping it moist, fresh and exceptionally buttery, using a blend of oak and beech woods, alongside heather that they forage themselves from Dartmoor or the New Forest. Finally it is thick cut to bring it as close to premium sashimi as you could hope to get in a sliced smoked salmon.

Altitude Alpine Strawberry Gin from Altitude

Welcome to the world of Altitude, the multiple award-winning premium quality mountain gins, born in the ski resort of Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, France, the adventure capital of Europe! Inspired by an Alpine wonderland, Altitude Gin has used the inspiration of the Alpine surroundings of Chamonix to bring together delicious botanicals that capture the experiences and sensations of the mountains. Altitude is a naturally flavoured gin with a difference, introducing the flavours of the summer long harvest of alpine strawberries, which grow in the open meadows and forest clearings of the Alps. Altitude Alpine Strawberry Pink Gin balances the crisp, juniper taste of the Original Alpine Dry Gin, with the sweetness of alpine strawberries. Expect aromas of summer on the nose and light delicate gin on the palette. To enjoy a elegantly mixed L’Altitude Pink and Tonic, fill a large copa glass with ice, add 50 ml Altitude Pink, top with 150ml tonic and garnish with plenty of strawberries A truly unique Pink Gin, Altitude Alpine Strawberry Pink Gin is fresh and fruity. The perfect gift to treat someone special or for you to enjoy with friends!

Altitude are also making an environmental difference.… Mont-Blanc has become a symbol of climate change as its glaciers continue to rapidly melt in response to global warming. For every bottle of Altitude Alpine Strawberry Pink Gin sold, the team donate funds to charity partner CREA Mont-Blanc, who carry out scientific research into the impact of climate change in the Alps. Drink in the mountains and their sense of adventure, friendship and freedom! RRP: £35.

Black Turkey from Godwick Turkeys

Where better to buy your turkey than where Her Majesty the Queen also buys hers?! Godwick Turkeys have been supplying families, royal or otherwise, with quality free range turkeys for more than 50 years. They are dry-plucked by hand and hung for 14 days in the traditional way to guarantee a rich tasting, succulent meat. Just the way it should be.

Cranberry Sauce Pantry Jar from Fortnum and Mason

Fortnum and Mason‘s unique cranberry sauce is so good that you will want to eat it all year round. To the juiciest cranberries they have added Fortnum’s LBV Port, undiluted and straight from the bottle, plus zesty oranges to lift the flavour, so that it’s not too sweet and just tart enough. Wonderful with turkey, cold meats and pork pies, this extra-large jar will please any palate and stay the course.

Finest Beluga Caviar from Caviar House & Prunier

The preferred caviar from Caviar House & Prunier, for lovers of exceptional products. Beluga caviar, which comes exclusively from sturgeon Huso Huso, is very coarse-grained and pearl-grey in colour, with a wonderful consistency and unique taste, a great iodine-containing structure and an incomparably long finish. An ultimate and unrivalled caviar.

Give honour to whom honour is due: do not hesitate to open your best white wine or enjoy the Beluga caviar with a high-quality vodka, the Beluga Gold Line, and thus achieve perfect harmony.

Christmas wines from The Wine Society

The Wine Society‘s new Christmas Compendium is available now and brings you a wide range of wines that their buyers believe are perfect for anything and everything the festive season can throw your way. They have wines by occasion to make it easier than ever to select the best bottles for you and your loved ones to enjoy – from failsafe favourites to festive fizz, plus some magnums that make great Christmas centrepieces.

Gourmet Gift Box from RoniB’s Kitchen

This year, RoniB’s Kitchen‘s Gourment Gift Box is a collection that showcases the bold and complex flavours of the Philippines. It will take you on a culinary journey to the Far East where you will discover layers of flavour that have been developing over the centuries. Presented in a beautiful and eco-friendly gift box filled with wood wool, it contains Philippine Adobo Sauce, Ihaw Ihaw BBQ Sauce, Garlic Chilli Oil, Black Bean Chilli Paste and Tamarind Jam.

All products are made from natural ingredients with no artificial flavourings, preservatives or colourings. What you get is nature’s goodness and a discovery trail into the Filipino palate in every drop or teaspoon. This is a unique gift that will send you on the Orient Express.

St Maur elderflower liqueur from The Spirit of St. Maur

St Maur is a hand crafted premium elderflower liqueur from the Heart of England, made from responsibly sourced ingredients and flavours gathered in ancient family-owned woodlands. A versatile, award winning drink, St Maur is perfect for sipping or mixing. A beautiful aperitif on its own and sublime in brunch and pre-dinner cocktails, any time of the year.

St Maur is the creation of William and Kelsey Seymour, Earl and Countess of Yarmouth, and created uniquely by its producers to offer “a little drop of England’s heart” to share and enjoy wherever you are in the world. On the bottle you’ll see Percy, the brand’s partridge mascot. He is the ideal house guest for Christmas, even if you don’t have a pear tree to hand.

Vegan Gingerbread House Baking Kit by The Treehouse Bakery from Yumbles

There’s nothing like the smell of freshly baked gingerbread on Christmas day! From bake to build to decoration, this artisan Christmas gift from includes step-by-step directions to create a gingerbread house that Santa would be proud of. The product also uses 100% recyclable packaging for zero waste. Find this spectacular, festive baking kit on Yumbles, the largest marketplace for food and drinks in the UK.

Pigs in Blankets from Piper’s Farm

These sausages wrapped in bacon or ‘Pigs in Blankets’ from Piper’s Farm are ridiculously more-ish, the perfect fodder for feeding a hungry crowd. Wrapped in their award-winning, naturally-cured streaky bacon, the sausages crisp up beautifully in the oven.

Serve as part of an indulgent Sunday roast or as part of a festive feast. They are gluten-free and free from any preservatives or any other nasties. Order as early as possible to avoid missing out.

Glad Tidings Christmas Hamper from Wriggle

The Glad Tidings Hamper is a culmination of Wriggle‘s favourite festive food and drink from incredible craft producers. It’s a perfect supplement to Christmas dinner and will certainly help to spread good cheer. A beautiful, thoughtful, luxury gift that is bound to be well received.

Contents include: Domenico de Bertiol – Prosecco Frizzante; Cooperativa Valli Unite – Ottavio Rube Rosso; Black Lines – Paloma Cocktail; LillyPuds – Plum Pudding laced with Damson Gin; Hawkens Gingerbread – Christmas Tree Biscuits; The Original Cake Co. – Christmas Chocolate Yule Log; Hill & Vale – Mulled Wine Spice Sachets; Fresh Flour Co. – Sourdough Crackers; The Drinks Bakery – Mature Cheddar, Chilli & Almond Biscuits; Cornish Charcuterie – Mushroom Pâté with Chilli & Coriander; Pelagonia – Spicy Green Olive Tapenade; Zeet – Spicy Gordal Olives; Saporista – Cherry Peppers Stuffed with Cheese; Improper Marmalade – Gin & Tonic Marmalade; Gingerbeard Preserves – Date & Ale Chutney; R.A.W Artisan Honey – Raw Wildflower Honey; Cajuu – Lake Natron Salt & Pepper Cashew Nuts; Cuoco – Chocolate Florentines; Ocelot – Black Cherry Dark Chocolate; Teatulia – Single Origin Black Tea; Teatulia – Organic Masala Cha Spice Blend; Josh’s Chocolate – Vegan Hot Chocolate Spoon. £170.

Cooking with Alcohol recipe book by Aaron & Susannah Rickard from Amazon

Cooking with Alcohol will teach you to use one of the most popular ingredients in history in ways you’ve never imagined. This hardcover cookbook has over 100 recipes with alcohol as a central component of the dish – and each recipe has a beautiful photo alongside it, so you know exactly what you’re making. Discover a world of alcohol-infused cooking, from easy midweek suppers and heart-warming comfort foods, through to celebration feasts and luxurious desserts. Try recipes like Tequila and Habañero Salmon, Fennel & White Wine Tagliatelle, or have a go at the Salted Caramel and Spiced Rum Brownies or a White Wine Pound Cake. Many of the recipes are inspired from travels around the world, like the tapas dish of Chorizo in Red Wine and Honey, or the luxurious Spanish version of crème brûlée, Crema Catalana con Madeira.

Each recipe has a difficulty rating (between 1 and 3) and a list of the equipment required, making the book approachable for keen cooks and novices alike, and along the way you’ll explore some of the science of what alcohol is doing to the food. Perfect for anyone ready to be inspired by their alcohol shelf, Cooking with Alcohol will make every day in the kitchen exciting and every meal served at your table extraordinary.

Honeybell Spiced Rum from Premium Spirits

It all starts with the amazing bumble bee and its English blossom honey. Harnessing the sweetness of their all natural nectar and balancing it with bittersweet orange is central to creating the unique flavour of Honeybell Spiced Rum. Of equal importance is the careful and conscious distillation method. Honeybell use the original distiller of British rum and their head, heart and tail method to ensure they’re extracting and bottling only the finest cut of liquid. Put simply, the heart is where the richest and most flavoursome rum can be found, so this is all they use, ensuring an unmistakably premium product, with no corners cut in the making process.

It’s a Wonderful Life Hamper from Dukeshill

Offering a taste of the very best of Dukeshill, this hamper is sure to please the whole family, with highlights including a delicious Dukeshill Wiltshire Ham and its signature traditional Oak Smoked Salmon. The savoury selections also include the Isle of Mull Cheddar, Cote Hill Blue Cheese, a Boxing Day Chutney and the Pork Rillettes made for Dukeshill in France by slowly cooking pork belly with Espelette pepper and spices, then gently shredding the pork. Sweet picks include a Family Christmas Pudding, Luxury Mince Pies, Scottish Shortbread Box and Grandad’s Light Fruitcake Loaf, a special family recipe for a lightly spiced fruit cake.

Christmas Cheese Cake from Paxton & Whitfield

Courtesy of Paxton & Whitfield, this is a tiered cake of four classic, artisan cheeses for a contemporary Christmas cheese centrepiece with free UK* delivery. The Christmas Cheese Cake features a creamy Stilton Half Baby PDO 1kg, earthy Cheddar Pounder PDO 550g, creamy Celtic Soft cheese 200g and is topped with the beautiful star-shaped Etoile de Gatine 120g.

Your fresh & chilled Paxton & Whitfield cheese cake delivery includes a postcard introducing the four cheeses and explaining how to stack them as the cake. Perfect for a unique Christmas gift idea and an impressive way to serve your Christmas cheeseboard.

Luxury Frangipane Topped Mince Pies from Biscuiteers

It’s never too early to enjoy mince pies, especially when they’re this delicious. Biscuiteers‘ six mince pies are deep-filled with a matured mincemeat of cranberries, sultanas, currants, cinnamon, nutmeg and mixed spice, all soaked in brandy, rum, lemon juice and orange juice. Handmade using a traditional vintage pie blocker in their bakery, they use buttery sweet pastry, topped with a layer of almond frangipane for that indulgent finishing touch.

Ultimate Christmas Hamper from Meg Rivers Bakers of Happiness

The Ultimate Christmas Hamper from Meg Rivers Bakers provides all the Christmas favourites delivered to your door whilst supporting a worthy cause with a £10 donation to Teenage Cancer Trust.

The Limited Edition Stag Classic Christmas Cake is a real showstopper and will take centre stage on your festive table. Made to Meg Rivers’ original recipe with fine French Brandy, choc full of vine fruits and nuts and decorated with marzipan and icing and a beautiful gold iced stag and sumptuous festive ribbons. Mini Frangipane Mince Pies are a delicious twist on a Christmas staple, a large Christmas pudding and a delightful tin of Classic Shortbread Shapes complete the luxury Hamper.

Sweet Nativity Panettone from Fiasconaro

Carefully-selected ingredients represent the real key to interpreting all the different lines of Fiasconaro panettone. A continuous search for ancient and genuine flavours, combined with the most rigorous control of the requirements of each supplier are behind the uncompromising quality of Fiasconaro‘s panettones.

The Dolce Presepie (Sweet Nativity) Panettone is a unique panettone made with raisins and fresh candied orange that contains a nativity scene made up of white chocolate characters.

Traditional Plum Pudding with Hennessy Cognac from Lewis & Cooper

Lewis & Cooper award-winning plum puddings are specially prepared to a secret century old recipe. We make our puddings the way our forefathers did, selecting only the finest of ingredients: succulent Chilean raisins, sun ripened in the vineyards of Santiago; raw cane sugar from the West Indies; oak aged Hereford cider; full bodied Claret and a generous lacing of Hennessy Cognac; all infused with spices from the Orient.

Lewis & Cooper handmade puddings combine all the elements of a traditional pudding and yet remain light and lively. Deep resonant fruit flavours with citrus notes of lemon and orange combine with the subtle yet distinctive taste of Cognac to leave your taste buds yearning for more. Our puddings are widely reviewed in local and national press, and have been voted “top plum pudding” in independent surveys, most recently, the Independent on Sunday voted our Plum Puddings ‘The Number 1 Foodie Treat for Christmas’.

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Comments (46)

  1. Gaynor says:

    After last year’s non event of a Christmas I’m feeling strangely nervous about cooking a Christmas dinner after a year off. The more reliable ingredients I can get hold of like the pigs in blankets the less pressured the preparations.

    • Moya Finn says:

      You’ve got the same approach to Christmas as me! Outsource it. Leave it to the experts.

      A number of the suppliers on this list will be getting orders from me.

    • Paul Johnson says:

      You can never be too organised for Christmas, Gaynor…! (Actually, I take that big – I was eating out somewhere this year and they had their tree up BEFORE Halloween, but you know what I mean…)

      Glad it was helpful to you, Moya!

  2. Caroline Bartlett says:

    Hampers are such a great Christmas gift. Most of the items have good shelf lives. It’s a nice treat to open up a jar or packet in spring when Christmas is long gone.

  3. Brad says:

    Choosing good wines for presents isn’t easy. Nowadays there are thousands of wines out there. That’s why I’d recommend latching onto the Wine Society’s expertise.

  4. Steve says:

    I’ve got big hopes for the Altitude strawberry gin. Alpine strawberries really pack a punch with their intense flavour, different to their cousins grown under plastic.

    • Paul Johnson says:

      I think they have also developed techniques in Switzerland that have allowed them to extend the ripening season, which means they can be picked fresh for a longer period. Archeological excavations in Switzerland, where strawberry seeds have been found, have even shown that we’ve been enjoying them since the Stone Age!

  5. Karen Morris says:

    Christians will tell me that Christmas isn’t all about the turkey. The thing is that when all the family sit down together the turkey takes centre stage.

    As Christmas cook for many years, I always felt under pressure. I always wanted a quality free range turkey, not wanting to take my chances with a supermarket bird.

    • Paul Johnson says:

      Supermarkets sell free range, too! At least, sometimes. But if you’re buying from a source that also supplies the Royal family, I think you can be pretty much assured your bird has had a good life and the production is in good hands…

  6. Tim Harris says:

    A salmon starter for Christmas lunch is all part of our family’s Christmas lunch tradition. I always buy a little more than is really needed for a break from turkey sandwiches over the rest of the festive season. Your recommendation from London Smoke & Cure looks ideal.

    • Paul Johnson says:

      Yes, and nice to have a bit of thickness to the salmon, too. All too often nowadays, the salmon that you buy from the supermarkets is so wafer-thin that it doesn’t even remain in one slice when you remove it from the packaging. Not so with this one!

  7. Mel Read says:

    Some fabulous suggestions here, thank you! It’s also a timely reminder that I need to plan ahead and get sorted. I wonder if some products will be short supply this year, what with all the craziness of this current world we live in!!!!

    • Valerie says:

      And as one of the glitzy, tinsely TV ads for one of the supermarkets keeps telling us “Christmas is all about the food.”

      The problem with buying early in our house is that everything would get eaten long before Christmas Day.

    • Paul Johnson says:

      My advice would be to buy in now anything that will keep beyond Christmas. It’s chaos here in Cumbria at the moment – many homes without power. Thankfully we are OK in that respect, but we have taken in two children from a local boarding school that is without power (they can’t cook for them or anything). It just goes to show how vulnerable we can be sometimes – whether it’s COVID, Storm Arwen, snow or something else, there is always the potential for a disruption to the supply chain.

  8. Charlie Watkins says:

    Only 29 days to go til the big day! I think we might have goose this year, but that turkey does sound amazing! Liking the look also of those condiments from RoniB’s Kitchen… the cold meats on Boxing Day could always do with livening up a bit!

  9. Jimmy says:

    If that smoked salmon tastes as good as it looks, count me in!!

  10. Henry Parker says:

    Love that Christmas cake from Meg Rivers – I might just have to get one of those. It looks a real eye-catcher for the Christmas dinner table.

  11. Ted says:

    We’ve had a couple of people bring boxes of Lily O’Brien’s Desserts Collection to dinner parties that we’ve hosted. Sadly, they were really popular, disappeared on the evening and none left for us on the next day.

  12. Marcus says:

    A panettone that depicts the nativity?! That’s a new one on me! Looks amazing!

  13. Pete says:

    Good to see the St Maur elderflower liqueur featured. It’s a delicate taste and as there’s plenty of elderflower around we really out to make more of it. Such a great natural resource.

  14. Mark Kirkpatrick says:

    It’s great to see you’ve added a ‘food and drink’ round-up to your regular Christmas gift guides. It’s great to find content that is genuinely useful and helps me plan for the festive season.

    • Paul Johnson says:

      Thanks, Mark. Yes, it was a new addition that we thought would go down well with readers. We’re hoping next year to also run some geographically-themed food and drink articles along the same lines, so watch this space for those.

  15. Zoe Watson says:

    Such a varied selection. I’m adding the gingerbread house to my list – my daughter will love that. I might have to also place a Wine Society order to help me through the making of it!! LOL.

  16. Sherianne Higgin says:

    I hadn’t heard of any of these brands before reading this. The Cooking with Alcohol book would be a great gift for friends who enjoy gourmet cooking and I am intrigued by the St Maur elderflower liqueur

  17. Mel Shepherd says:

    Good to see a mince pie recommendation that goes beyond the usual supermarkets. Much though I like ALDI mince pies, I think these ones will be on another level………

    • Paul Johnson says:

      Yes, I think you might find these are on a whole new level. The shelf life might not be as long as you are used to (given that they’re made of frangipane) but that doesn’t seem to be a problem in our household – they disappear quickly enough!!

  18. We no longer really look for decoration and gifts at major holidays. But food and drink is a great way for us to celebrate Christmas. There are many things on your list that would surely make it to my gift list. And I see a gift or two for foodies on my gift list.I could make up my own gift hamper.

    • Paul Johnson says:

      Glad to be of help, Linda. I know what you mean about making the food the focus… gifts are lovely, but sometimes it’s just about having quality time with family and friends, and with some great fayre to go with all of that.

  19. Raksha says:

    Wow such amazing list of food and drinks. I love chocolates and cakes during Christmas and I also would love the wines. The others are new to me and I would definitely want to try the cranberries sauce, looks delicious.

  20. Ambica Gulati says:

    These hampers are so tempting. Last year due to Covid-19 lockdown, the festive hampers were not available in India. But this year, it looks like a different Christmas. I would love to sip the St Maur premium elderflower liqueur, Honeybell Spiced Rum and straberry gin. Merry Chritstmas in advance!

  21. Bill Parker says:

    I’m half tempted just to work my way through this list, placing orders. I think if I did that, all I would need is some veg, stuffing and bread sauce, and I’d be ready for Christmas!

  22. Natascha says:

    Great list of gift ideas! I am tempted to order some of them. The vegan gingerbread house is too cute!

  23. Ami Bhat says:

    I am not a gin drinker but that strawberry gin has tempted me to try. The gingerbread house – that is something my daughter would definitely dig. These gifts would be a definite hit in this part of the world.

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