Lead Image: Claridges Mayfair Christmas Hamper
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1 Fortnum & Mason
Fortnum & Mason was the founder of the hamper trend, kicking off the indulgent holiday tradition in the 17th century. As the Queen’s greengrocer, they literally create hampers fit for royalty, with the most elaborate – The Sovereign Hamper – priced £2,500. This crowning beauty features every biscuit, butter and bauble you’ll ever need nestled in a wicker basket, as well as champagnes, Christmas puddings, preserves, teas and teaware. Other premium treats include The Christmas Feast Hamper (£1,000), The Monarch Hamper (£750), The Vintage Champagne Hamper (£500) – which we’d like to call the ‘champer hamper’ – and The Christmas Day Hamper (£500). At the other end of the price scale is The Tea Basket (£60) and The Taste of Fortnum’s Hamper (£60).
From elaborate Christmas hampers to Cheddar & Prosecco gift sets, there’s tonnes of choice at Selfridges, many of them surprisingly good value. at the top of the pecking order though is the hugely impressive Best Of Selfridges Hamper. Priced a whopping £5,000, it includes the likes of panettone, figgy pudding, marmalade with gold glitter, mince pies, Christmas cake, smoked salmon, Wiltshire ham, Beluga caviar, Stilton cheese, multiple bottles of wine, whisky, champagne, port and accessories like a Boska wood and stainless steel cheese set, Tom Dixon glass decanter and LSA champagne saucers. Other rich pickings include the Christmas Day Hamper (£1,000), Festive Deli Hamper (£300), Classic Alcohol-Free Christmas Hamper (£120) and I Am Nut OK Deluxe Vegan Hamper (£60).
Not to be outdone, Knightsbridge legend Harrods also has a £5,000 hamper. The Ultimate Christmas Hamper contains everything you need to put on a showstopping festive spread from champagne and fine wines (13 wines and champagne, in fact, as well as two spirits), to various types of caviar and salmon, tea and coffee, cheese and biscuits, cured meats and a decadent Christmas pudding. There’s also The Harrodian − Harrods’ namesake hamper – priced £2,500), the Celebration of Christmas Hamper (£750), Daylesford Larder Christmas Hamper (£300), and Christmas Carol Hamper (£100).
4 Harvey Nichols
Harvey Nichols has beauty hampers as well as foodie hampers this year, but it’s the Harvey Nichols Festive Feast Hamper (£1,800) that’s got our attention. The indulgent selection contained a record-breaking 44 items last year, but 2020’s version features a staggering 158 different items – well, it has been a tough year… Containing practically the whole Foodmarket, you’ll find something for every course and from every corner of the globe, from a full bar of gin, mulled wine and champagne to Christmas preserves, naughty nibbles, chocolate truffles, cake, crackers, panettone, Christmas pud and more. At the less pricey end of the spectrum is the Ultimate Italian Christmas Hamper (£275), Winter Warmer Hamper (£100) and Champagne Breakfast Hamper (£85).
5 Fenwick / Bentalls
Fenwick, and its Kingston outpost Bentalls, have sourced some of the finest British produce, homegrown carefully crafted treats and rich pickings for its 14-strong collection of 2020 Christmas hampers. Top of the range is the Deliciously Indulgent Hamper (£450), full of festive treats like Taittinger Champagne, Ballancourt Salmon Terrine with Dill, Charbonnel et Walker truffles, limoncello panettone, tawny port, cocoa-dusted truffles, duck pâté and more. There are also hampers and gift sets from Cartwright & Butler and Daylesford, as well as a more wallet-friendly Festive Favourites Hamper (£80).
Choose from three decadent Christmas Hampers this December. The Mayfair, Davies and Mews hampers are all great choices, filled with wine sweets and food galore at three different price points. The Mayfair Hamper is top of the range, priced £750 and filled with specially selected products from their home-made Christmas pudding to Claridge’s: The Cookbook and plenty of biscuits and booze. The Davies hamper is priced £495 and the Mews hamper is a more accessible £150, featuring a bottle of Sancerre, champagne truffles, shortbread biscuits, chocolate covered hazelnuts, strawberry preserve and Claridge’s blend tea.
Chelsea-based Partridges, another favourite of Her Majesty The Queen, has been creating luxury festive hampers for nearly 50 years. Ranging in price from £500 to £70, the hampers champion the essence of Chelsea, including some local brands. The top of the range hamper is the Buckingham, with a fine selection of wines and spirits, Alderton ham, wild smoked salmon and Stilton cheese in a ceramic jar. Local patriots should check out the Cadogan Hamper (£165), with crackers from Belgravia’s The Fine Cheese Co and Partridges’ own Christmas pudding, or the Chelsea Flower Gift Hamper (£99), with goodies from Partridges’ own Chelsea Flower collection, including gin, Vanilla & Geranium Fudge and Honey & Lavender Butter Biscuits.
8 John Lewis
Unsurprisingly, John Lewis has an extensive list of hamper options, priced from £1,000 to £60. Top of the range is the John Lewis & Partners Christmas Treasure Chest Hamper (£1,000), featuring the likes of Christmas pudding, pheasant and venison pate, panettone, two bottles of Bollinger Champagne, a box of luxury crackers and a 2kg milk chocolate Christmas tree. You’ll find Waitrose hampers here, too, like the Waitrose & Partners No.1 Ultimate Hamper (£500), as well as the John Lewis & Partners The Chelsea Hamper (£100) and the more purse-friendly John Lewis & Partners Festive Treats Hamper (£60).
9 Abel & Cole
Abel & Cole – leaders in farm-fresh and organic veg and recipe boxes delivered right to you door – has a range of festive hampers, including the gorgeous Christmas Show Stopper Food Hamper full or organic goodies. Priced £250 it includes Fleury Carte Champagne, fine wines and port, a Daylesford Orange & Elderflower Ham, Seven & Wye Mulled Spice Smoked Salmon, Cropwell Bishop Creamery Waxed Blue Stilton, preserves, champagne truffles, Columbian coffee and a luxury Christmas pudding. There’s also The Luxury Nibbles & Fizz Christmas Hamper (£70), with a simpler selection of prosecco, cheese straws, mini mince pies, vintage Cheddar, smoked salmon and more.
Head to Italy this December with help from Carluccio’s hamper selection. There’s a huge selection available, priced from £30 to £280, with the most elaborate being La Collezione and the Grandioso. The former comes with Carluccio’s most-loved larder products to see you through from aperitivo hour through to dinner and digestivo, plus a recipe folder, while the latter comes with the very best of artisanal Italian produce, including a 1kg panettone. There’s also a new Spritzmas collection, created in collaboration with Aperol.
11 Borough Market
Borough Market is launching a range of four specially curated festive hampers to bring Christmas cheer to locals and food lovers across the UK. Packaged in a reusable Borough Market bag, the items range from warming mulled wine ingredients to sweet treats and festive suppertime staples. Top of the range is the Luxe Christmas Bag (£74.95), containing the likes of Bath Soft Cheese, Italian charcuterie from The Parma Ham & Mozzarella Stand, ginger thins from Karaway Bakery, mince pie scrolls from Karaway Bakery and almond & orange brittle from Food & Forest. The hampers can be delivered by zero emission electric bikes within a 10-mile radius of the market, or posted nationwide via the new carbon neutral ‘Borough by Post’ service.
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