Bringing your favourite people together over fine food and drinks is one of life’s most glorious pleasures, but faffing around at the shops trying to decide what to buy or cook can take the fun away.
7* Life feels your pain so has created this mini guide to help you create the ultimate dinner party with a selection of luxury bottles and a must-have festive hamper to impress even the fussiest of guests this year.
Taittinger Brut Prestige Rosé NV
The perfect aperitif and delicious with light, fruity puddings for when you can’t face a bowl of Christmas pudding
A benchmark rosé. Uniquely packaged in clear glass to show off its pretty pink hues. Delicate salmon pink in colour. Its aromas are fresh with wild strawberries and a hint of spice.
Taittinger Brut Vintage 2014
Perfect with canapés: smoked salmon, pâté or even a hard cheese such as Gruyère.
Made only in the best vintages this 50/50 blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir provides impeccable body and finesse.
Domaine Carneros Brut 2017
Napa Valley, California, USA
Stockists: Vino Wines
Enjoy with roast turkey or try pairing with seafood
This very focused and elegant wine displays lovely notes of key lime, honeycomb and lemon curd. It is round and displays hints of lime blossom, baked pear and lemon meringue, resulting in a creamy texture and a long finish.
Kleine Zalze Cap Classique Brut NV
Western Cape, South Africa
Perfect party aperitif wine or with fish and shellfish
A traditional Methode Cap Classique, showing elegance and complexity with a long finish. Aromas of strawberry and blackberry fruit flavours complemented by classic biscuit bouquet richness. A lively fine mousse transforms this wine into an unforgettable sparkling sensation.
Roger Goulart Gran Reserva Brut 2015
Sant Esteve Sesrovires, Alt Penedès region, Cava, Spain
Enjoy as an aperitif wine; or with vegetarian roasts
Long ageing Cava of strong character from its ageing on lees. Yellow colour with golden reflections, bright with fine bubbles. In the nose it is creamy, highlighting the fruity notes with a background of toasted nuts. Fresh palate, silky and structured.
Denbies Cubitt Blanc de Noirs 2014
Wine GB and Decanter Awards – Gold
£34.99 from Denbies
Delicious with shellfish and particularly Oysters. Pairs with Christmassy flavours of Apple and Cinnamon.
The 2014 Denbies Cubitt Blanc de Noirs has a delicate copper colour and fruit aromas of strawberry and cocoa. Enhanced by the use of barrel matured dosage and six years of bottle ageing the complex fruit flavours combined with a chalkiness give this wine breadth and body whilst retaining freshness. The balance is on the crisp side and the finish is miles long.
Launched in January 2021, 44 Foods is an online farm shop that’ll wow you and your guests this Christmas. The firm is a collective of farmers and food producers who are passionate about ethically produced, fairly priced, sustainable food. Together they supply fruit and veg, meat and dairy and larder essentials direct from their farms to your door – offering customers a fairer way to shop, and promising to pay producers and farmers a fair price.
44 Foods understands hosting Christmas – whether that’s the big day itself, Boxing Day or a Christmas party – can be stressful, which is why its range of special Christmas bundles and hampers are so popular as everything you need is in one box.
From Christmas Turkey Dinners to Christmas Eve and Boxing Day bundles, from Veggie essentials to a Santa Box and our personal favourite – a Christmas Savoury Treats Box, which is a collection from artisan cheesemakers across the country and includes crackers, chutney, fruit and nuts, making it the ultimate cheeseboard.
For more information visit www.44foods.com
Tastily is a fresh, pre-made meal subscription service, that delivers delicious and nutritionally balanced chef-made meals to food lovers across the nation. Unlike traditional ready meals, Tastily’s are free from artificial ingredients, preservatives or refined sugar and are never frozen. Instead, the brand uses cutting-edge packaging technology to keep each dish fresh for seven days so subscribers never have to compromise on great taste and good health.
Every one of the dishes is created by Michelin-trained chefs. Head Chef Steve Bailey has worked at some of the world’s best kitchens, including five-star luxury country hotel Cliveden House, and for exclusive events catering business Alison Price & Company. Bailey’s team also includes Kevin Love, who was a Head Chef at Heston Blumenthal’s Hinds Head in Bray, where he helped the restaurant win and retain its first Michelin Star.
The brand has a focus on quality, sustainability and provenance, using as many British ingredients as possible: from Red Tractor certified meat and local cheese, to vegetables sourced directly from Covent Garden Market. All deliveries are carbon neutral and, as the meals last up to seven days, they can be delivered weekly, reducing the carbon footprint as well as consumer costs.
For Christmas, the team has created a range of festive meals to suit all dietary requirements and tastes.
Meal options are:
Vegan Chicken Dinner
We chargrill our incredible vegan chicken breast and serve with rich fondant potatoes, caramelised maple carrots and parsnips, steamed greens, roast Brussel sprouts with a lemon, garlic and parsley gremolata and a rich red wine and cranberry gravy
Chestnut & Cranberry Nut Roast
We make our nut roast with a mix of squash, herbs, spices, nuts, chestnuts, dried fruits and chickpeas and serve with rich fondant potatoes, caramelised maple carrots and parsnips, steamed greens, roast brussel sprouts with a lemon, garlic and parsley gremolata and a rich red wine and cranberry gravy
We slow roast our turkey steak and serve with roasted pigs in blankets, rich fondant potatoes, caramelised maple carrots and parsnips, steamed greens, roast brussel sprouts with a lemon, garlic and parsley butter and a rich red wine and cranberry gravy
Festive Mac N Cheese
Creamy, rich mac and cheese, topped with roasted pigs in blankets, lemon roasted charred sprouts and topped with a toasted hazelnut, fennel and lemon crumb.
The service starts at £32.00, with individuals able to order four to fourteen meals a week, all with free delivery direct to the door. Dishes can be bought in any combination so people in the same household can enjoy different dishes at the same mealtimes, to suit differing tastes and dietary requirements. Individuals can even choose single portions or upgrade to larger sizes. Orders need to be checked out before Friday at 12pm for delivery the following Wednesday, or before Tuesday at 12pm for delivery on Saturday. The delivery can also be scheduled further in advance.
For more information visit tastily.co.uk