Santa, baby, got anything to eat?
Updated: Jan 5
Last-minute inspiration for a festive gift for the foodie in your life
Often overlooked as a gift idea, food and drink make excellent presents for friends and family who love to savour the good things in life and it's a brilliant way to support local producers and #buyirish for those nice, not naughty, on your list this year.
"... Santa baby, a '54 convertible too, light blue I'll wait up for you, dear Santa baby, so hurry down the chimney tonight...”
Things That Make You Go, Yummmm
In no particular order, here's my list of 10 perfectly delectable Christmas gifts. Enjoy!
1. Shines Seafood Selection Box
A selection of Ireland’s best tuna and seafood, from John and Marianne Shine. Shines Wild Irish Tuna is a family business based in Killybegs, Donegal, sourcing Wild Albacore Tuna with local fisherman off the coast of Ireland for their products.
Price: €25, shinesseafood.ie.
2. The Busker Blend Whiskey
Produced in the Royal Oak Distillery in Carlow, this is a new whiskey with a contemporary vibe. The range includes four types of Irish whiskey - Single Grain, Single Pot Still, Single Malt and a Blend. The Busker Blend, Triple Cask Triple Smooth, combines grain with a high percentage of malt and pot whiskey, matured and finished in three different casks (Bourbon, Sherry, Marsala). This whiskey brings a new meaning of smoothness to Irish Whiskey.
Price: €29.99 (the single varieties are €39.99), thebusker.com.
3. Lough Neagh Artisan Hamper & Tours
A range of the loveliest of local hampers from Hilltowns Farm Shop, including items from lots of local producers and themselves like honey, pâté, tea, tray bakes, oils, sauces, chutneys and juices, ranging in price from £25 to £150 (GBP).
Also, Lough Neagh Tours offer visitors some of the best tours in Northern Ireland, with an opportunity to meet the locals and immerse yourself in heritage, history and hospitality around this unique lake – the largest in the UK and Ireland. Gift vouchers are now available for tours beginning from April 2021, for example, Family Taster Tour, The Lough Neagh Fishing Story, loughneaghtours.com.
4. Dough Bros DIY Pizza Kit
Restaurant takeaways and at-home meal boxes have been a highlight this year during lockdown and pizza kits were among the most popular, in particular this one from the award-winning Dough Bros pizza restaurant in Galway.
Price: €35, thedoughbros.ie.
5. Dingle Gin Bauble
An annual festive limited-edition from the Dingle Distillery in County Kerry, containing the perfect measure of your favourite gin to enjoy.
Price: €18, dingledistillery.ie.
6. My Wild Atlantic Kitchen Recipes & Recollections
A compilation of the favourite recipes of acclaimed chef, Maura O’Connell Foley. This is a true labour of love representing Maura’s career in Kenmare, which spans over six decades. It not only captures over 250 dishes, it includes beautiful art, illustrations and landscape photography and features the formidable chef’s culinary recollections and stories, all expertly woven throughout.
Price: €35, mywildatlantickitchen.com.
7. Hill Picket Studio Cheese Knives
Design Elegance for Foodies – Based in Wicklow, Chaïm Factor crafts these beautiful and unique, handcrafted knives, made in from various woods.
Price: €29 & €36, sold in The Cupcake Bloke Bakery, Rialto, D8 and hillpicketstudio.com.
8. Ballyshane Cheese Boards
William and Cheryl of Ballyshane, Co. Carlow, create beautiful wooden pieces, handcrafted using locally sourced Irish Hardwoods.
Price: €25-€59 (small, medium and large available), ballyshane.com.
9. Stillgarden Distillery Social Box
This stellar box from Dublin 8's independent experimental distillery contains Stillgarden Social Gin, which is made using fresh botanicals all foraged from the community garden. Complete with two tall glasses, two reusable copper straws and two Garden Tour gift cards, it is the perfect gift for your socially-minded loved one.
Price: €68, stillgardendistillery.com.
10. Heart of Spain Hamper
I've cheated slightly with this last entry on my list, in that, while the company is Irish and available here, the products are not produced here. However, with good reason... a very high percentage of the population is missing Spain at the moment as so many travel there on holidays every year, for summer, winter sun and Christmas too! I thought it would be nice idea to send someone you know who loves Spain, a taste of Spain, with these delicious products from Heart of Spain; there is a variety of hampers to choose from.
Prices vary, heartofspain.ie.