If you haven’t finished your Christmas food and drink shopping list, why not add these tipples for the big day?
1) Dating back to the 1740s Stone’s Ginger Wine is making a comeback. It can be enjoyed neat or for a deliciously spicy cocktail try the Whisky Mac which is made with one part Stone’s Ginger Wine and one part whisky – the perfect winter warmer. With a rrp of around £6.50 it’s available at Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and ASDA.
2) Just in time for the festive season there’s a brand new premium vodka – Ketel One Oranje, flavoured with natural aromatic oils from Valencia and Mandarin oranges. Perfect for festive drinks or indeed the ideal gift for vodka lovers. Available from specialist retailers or online at Amazon priced £26.75.
3) From Tomatin Distilley comes a very special dram. A number of casks had been lying in Warehouse 6 since being filled on November 20, 1972. Watched over by four decades of custodians, it’s now been released. Housed in a beautiful presentation box holding a hand-blown Glencairn Crystal decanter filled with 1972; glasses decorated with solid copper bands, a solid copper stopper and a numbered certificate, it’s a beautiful dram to drink or treasure. Only 380 bottles have been released, priced £2,000 each. www.tomatin.com
4) Belvoir’s Elderflower Pressé is delicious on it’s own but if you’re craving something stronger, it’s good with gin or perfect in a cocktail. The ‘Bubbling with Joy’ limited edition bottle will be on sale in most major supermarkets and other stockists, with a RRP of around £2.29.
5) Raise a glass to the military with Edinburgh’s Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo Gin from Pickering’s Gin. Made with four Scottish botanicals (Heather, milk thistle, bog myrtle and Scots Pine) which gives it sweet, earthy and floral notes. Perfect serve: Tonic, slices of green apple and a fresh Scottish bramble. RRP £20.
6) The Crémant de Loire from Chateau de Champteloup is exclusive to Iceland – this is a high-quality sparkling wine made in the same way as Champagne but for a fraction of the price. Offering fine bubbles and a long finish – ideal for Christmas Eve parties. £9.99.
7) Make the most of winter season with Hayman’s Sloe Gin.
Use it to create a mulled sloe gin cocktail – guaranteed to stave off the winter chill. Available from a variety of shops and online stockists, priced around £22.
8) Following on from their recent win at the Aberdeen City and Shire Tourism Awards for Best Heritage Tourism Experience, Glen Garioch Distillery in Oldmeldrum has the ultimate gift idea for any whisky lover – the ‘Legends of the Garioch’ tour which is a half day unique connoisseurs experience.
It includes a location tour of the Garioch area, a unique tasting session of some of their portfolio as well as a whisky pairing lunch in the 800-year old Cave Bar at Meldrum House Country Hotel. Gift vouchers, priced £120pp from Glen Garioch Tourist Distillery on 01651 873450 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
9) Octoave Glentauchers 2008 is an eight-year-old single malt, bottled as part of Duncan Taylor’s Octave range using differing cask sizes for the maturation. Tasting notes of ripe pears, green apples and creamy custard with a toffee, milk chocolate and butter biscuit palate, it’s the perfect Christmas dram. Available from The Spirits Embassy at £63. www.thespiritsembassy.com
10) Two favourites come together in this bottle – Baileys Original Irish Cream and chocolate. Baileys Chocolat Luxe is utterly indulgent and a delicious way to end a special meal. You’ll find it in selected supermarkets priced at around £12.