Photography by The Devon Foodie unless otherwise stated
In our third and final Christmas gift guide we’ve tried to capture the essence of the season with some marvellous Christmas drinks. We’ve got something for everyone with these brilliant local beverages. From tea and hot chocolate that are perfect for stockings, to rum and gin that are sure to please even the most discerning tastes. So sit back, grab a glass and get into the festive spirit (no matter how potent it may be..).
What: A premium quality tipple that showcases this region’s talent for distilling quality gin.
Who: Salcombe Gin produce exceptional hand crafted gins from the beautiful coastal town of Salcombe. They pride themselves on their uncompromising approach to quality and an almost obsessive attention to detail.
Why you should gift it: These small batch gins are distilled with unrivalled care and attention to detail. Blended from 6 or 7 still runs, together with Dartmoor water, you can really taste the difference between this splendid drink and many better-known national brands. Salcombe Gin use a number of citrus peels including grapefruits, lemons and limes to enhance the flavours of their gin and we can’t get enough of its heady aroma and perfectly balanced flavours.
A bottle of this spirit is a must for any true gin fan.
Vanilla Beer by Little Pod
What: An award-winning vanilla beer that would make a wonderful stocking filler for beer connoisseurs.
Who: Made exclusively for Little Pod, this smooth and creamy beer is handcrafted by Hunter’s Brewery.
Why you should gift it: This beer is not what you’d expect. It’s a dark, rich drink with sweet caramel flavours and coffee notes. As testament to how good it is, Little Pod’s Vanilla Beer has been awarded a Gold Star by the Great Taste Team and we’re pretty sure that dads everywhere are going to be a fan of this one. For something extra special, get crafty and put together your own mini hamper containing a number of local and national artisan beers.
Dead Mans Fingers
What: A fantastic rum with just a touch of spice – perfect for the festive season!
Who: This rum is created by the owners of Exeter’s Rum and Crab Shack and it features their brilliantly illustrated mascot Cornish Ron.
Why you should gift it: We love the fragrant spices and amber glow of this small batch rum. It evokes memories of crackling fireside gatherings and it’s got a lovely smooth quality to it that rum lovers are guaranteed to enjoy. We love how there are notes of orange, caramel and vanilla; not forgetting those choice spices of saffron, cinnamon and nutmeg too. You can enjoy Dead Man’s Finger’s with a mixer or as part of a cocktail; however, we prefer to drink ours on the rocks as this is one rum that really deserves to be appreciated in isolation.
Tom Morrow Sour Cherry Cordial
What: A sour cherry cordial that is packed with bold and fruity flavour.
Who: These cordials are lovingly made by hand by Tom Morrow Cordials in the heart of the Devonshire countryside.
Why you should gift it: Tom Morrow’s cordials are delicious and versatile. Whoever is lucky enough to receive one of these bottles for Christmas can look forward to drizzling it over their ice-cream, baking it into cupcakes or popping it in their prosecco for a light and refreshing cocktail. We also hear that sour cherries are incredibly low in calories, so we guess they won’t have to worry about breaking their New Year’s resolutions either!
Bloom Berry Mull’d Berry Juice
What: A fantastic alternative to mulled wine that’s packed with fresh fruit and festive flavour.
Who: Nestled in the bustling hedgerows of Clyst Hydon, BloomBerry Juice create an amazing range of fruit juices for all tastes. For more information check out our recent interview with owners Chris and Sarah Jones.
Why you should gift it: This juice is perfect for whoever’s designated driver this Christmas. BloomBerry’s Mull’d Berry juice is a delicious alternative to alcoholic mulled wine. It contains over 75% fruit juice and is infused with spices, orange zest and honey. Drink it cold or serve it hot with some slices of orange for a truly festive treat!
Price: 12 for £24
Little’s Instant Coffee Festive Gift Set
What: An ideal gift for a coffee lovers stocking.
Who: We are Littles are one of our favourite local brands. Their range of flavoured instant coffees are a huge hit with the whole Devon Foodie Team and they’re on a mission to liven up our cups.
Why should you gift it: If you haven’t tried We are Little’s infused coffees you don’t know what you’re missing out on. We are Littles take the best Arabica coffee they can find and gently infuse it with many wonderful flavours (all without any added sugar). Their new limited edition Christmas Spirit flavour is arguably one of the best infusions yet; with notes of orange, a hint of brandy and warming spices. Add a jar or two of Little’s instant coffees to a friend or loved ones Christmas stocking or show them that you care with a lovely Little’s Gift Set (complete with enamel mug).
Price: £2.75 each or £10 for the gift set.
Devonshire Tea Festive Selection
What: A selection of bespoke tea blends all wrapped in one delightfully presented box.
Who: Devonshire Tea is a little company of tea merchants based in Axminster in Devon. They have developed a range of colourfully packaged blends to “brighten every day”.
Why you should gift it: Devonshire Tea’s Festive Selection includes four of their bespoke teas brought together for Christmas. With Classic Breakfast, Earl Grey, Delightful Afternoon, and Assam Origin all included in one box, this little set would make an excellent gift for any tea lover in your family. We love the fact that their teabags are stitched rather than stapled – making them more environmentally friendly than many leading UK tea brands – and we really don’t think that a Devon Foodie Hamper could be complete without the inclusion of some proper Devonshire tea.
Salcombe Brew Sunny Cove Blend
What: A tasty blend of ground coffee that’s guaranteed to enhance your morning brew.
Who: Salcome Brew are relatively new to the foodie scene. They create unique blends of coffee and for every packet sold they’ll be donating 25p to the @RNLISalcombe.
Why you should gift it: If you prefer your coffee smooth and with no bitter aftertaste, then Salcombe Brew have just the coffee to start your Christmas morning. We tried the Sunny Cove in our cafeteria and were pleasantly surprised by its smoothness. It is available to buy in a single cup form – ideal for filling stockings – in handy capsules, or in 200g bags that are great for gifting.
Price: £5.95 for 200g
Willie’s Cacao Chulucanas Hot Chocolate
What: One of the most indulgent and high quality hot chocolate powders around.
Who: This drinkable chocolate treat comes courtesy of Willie’s Cacao.
Why you should gift it: Make your next mug of hot chocolate a little bit more indulgent with the help of this sweet and flavoursome cacao powder. The Peruvian Singe Estate 50% dark chocolate makes every cup of Willie’s Cacao hot chocolate full of soft fruity notes and a subtle sweetness. For a really festive cup we recommend enjoying this cacao with a good helping of whipped cream, a handful of marshmallows and just a little dusting of cinnamon…
WIN: An Exclusive Devon Foodie Hamper
We’ll be giving you the chance to WIN an exclusive Devon Foodie Hamper containing many of the products featured in our three gift guides.
Keep your eyes peeled for an update on how to enter!