What’s a celebration without indulging your taste buds? whether you’re throwing a party at home, going to a pal’s, or gathering at a restaurant, these tantalising offerings will have you craving for more.
Scheduling Christmas luncheon with friends, or dinner with the family? Consider these festive selections that will put everyone in a jolly mood with their well-rounded flavours.
1. Crackling Christmas Pork, $21, from reDPan. Succulent pork topped with a crisp layer of skin, served with seasonal greens like brussels sprouts as well as five-spice plum sauce and mustard caviar, is rich in exactly the way you’d expect a Christmas dish to be.
2. Tortellini in Brodo, $24++, from Kith Cafe. Stuffed pasta in warm broth makes a traditional first course for Christmas feasts in northern Italy. Kith Cafe’s hearty rendition sees tortellini filled with braised veal and ricotta cheese in a herb consomme, and served with slow-cooked veal cheek, brunoise vegetables, goji berries and parmesan crisp.
3. Rainbow Maki, $13.99, from Sakae Sushi. Christmas meals don’t have to centre around Western cuisine. Switch it up with an easy-to-eat Rainbow Maki roll for a burst of fresh flavour that partygoers of all ages will enjoy.
Instead of being the 20th volunteer to bring wine to the house party, try presenting these Yule-appropriate hearty hampers and takeaways that everyone will be reaching for non-stop.
1. Ultimate Indulgence hamper*, $300, from Marks & Spencer. Wine, chocolates, tea and pudding – this has it all. Even the most difficult of in-laws would approve.
2. Madeleine Rose Floral Cookies, $47, from The Cookie Museum. These eggless, low-sugar, fragrant biscuits conjure up visions of a rose garden – a perfect gift for the health-minded lady. Pick out a selection of tea to pair them with, and you’re good to go.
3. Christmas Turkey Platter, $88.80, from COLLIN’S. Lacking a centrepiece for your celebrations? Don’t slave at the stove for hours. Simply pre-order a perfectly done turkey, complete with grilled veggies and ham, from an eatery renowned for its prowess in grilling meat.
4. Cookies in a Jar, $18 a jar, from Milk & Honey – Artisan Yogurt & Dessert Bar. While it’s best known for its colourful concoctions, the artisan yogurt and dessert bar also sells delectable festive Shortbread Cookies and Biscotti that’ll sit well beside every cup of tea or coffee you serve this season.
5. Tre Marie Panettone (assorted flavours), $9.90-$42.90, from Emporium Shokuhin. Gift a taste of Milan with these famed, buttery Italian holiday cakes in different flavours, with fillings or toppings ranging from sugared fruit peels and icing sugar to orange blossom honey.
6. Christmas Plush with Candy Set (Santa), $24.90, from Sophisca. These cheery packs will make for sweet stocking stuffers, filled with season-appropriate peppermint candy canes, chocolate coins and the like.
7. Walkers Christmas Edition Scottish Biscuits and Shortbread selections (assorted), $10.10-$29.75, from Emporium Shokuhin. Such yummy melt-in-your-mouth goodies will disappear the moment they’re unboxed. No matter – the pretty festive packaging alone is worth keeping for the smiles it’ll elicit, whether you choose the London Bus, Stocking, Wobbly Santa or Wobbly Snowman tins.
SUGAR, SPICE AND ALL THINGS NICE
No festivities are complete without a sweet treat or tasty toast. These seasonal drinks and desserts will please any sweet tooth and impart instant Christmas cheer.
1. Caramel Vanilla Latte and Peppermint Iced Mocha, $6.40-$7.40 each, from O’Coffee Club. Get into the festive mood with these cheery, uplifting drinks, each served with a peppermint candy cane!
2. Winter Dream Tea Latte, $6-$7.20, from The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf. This aptly named cuppa composed of black tea, rooibos, sweet spices and creamy vanilla will have you dreaming of cold, white Christmases with every sip.
3. Whisky Honeycomb Mocha, $7.80++, from Kith Cafe. No eggnog? How about this festive kick in a cup that hits the sweet spot by juxtaposing the sweetness of honeycomb with the dusky spice of coffee and whisky?
4. Danish Sundae, $7.50, from ST.MARC CAFÉ. Resembling a snow-covered miniature Christmas tree, this petite butter danish piped over with creamy vanilla soft-serve ice cream comes with five topping combinations to choose from: Chocolate Wafer, Strawberry Cookie, Mango Marshmallow, Lemon Cookie and Caramel Popcorn.
5. All Manuka, All Boost log cake, $58++, from Swensen’s. It’s not only the cheery colour that will be an unexpected joy at the table. The wholesome flavours of manuka honey will delight your taste buds, while your waist will thank you for making a healthier choice over other sugary confections.