December 4, 2022

AmericanHummus

Food & Travel Enthusiast

The Best Food And Drink I Tried So Far This Christmas 2021

I tried everything from a £2 bottle of non-alcoholic wine to some £150 whisky!

✨Best budget-friendly food and drink✨

1.

These non-alcoholic Belvoir Farms drinks are so good, I (a drinker) buy them every year. I love their Mulled Winter punch and the delicious Spiced Ginger punch!


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

They’re not too sweet OR too bland, and they’re pretty enough to make sure any non-drinkers in your group don’t feel left out. 

Mulled Winter punch: £2.00 for 750ml.

Spiced ginger punch price: £2.00 for 750ml.


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

Not only are these seriously cute, I love their texture too – it’s the perfect balance of really smooth chocolate and lil’ crunchy bits (I’m not drooling, you are).

Price: £3.00 for 220g.

3.

My flatmates and I have bought eight boxes of these Tesco biscuits so far this season (no, really).


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

I know these chocolate biscuit boxes are *usually* really impressive but even considering the high standards, as a cocoa connoisseur I can honestly say Tesco’s own-brand one won out for us against every other option this year. There isn’t a dud choice in there, and they’ve all got the perfect chocolate-to-biscuit ratio! 

Price: £4.00.


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

The company will remove the equivalent of ten plastic bottle’s worth of plastic from the sea for every bottle you drink (so it’s a good thing they’re so delicious). None of the bottles had that acrid, bitter taste you can sometimes find in sub-£10 wines – in fact, I had to double-check the price tag after trying ’em!

Price: £9.00 for the rosé or sauvignon blanc from Sainsbury’s, £8.00 for the chardonnay from the Co-Op.

5.

Speaking of deceptively luxe-tasting booze, Brewdog’s rhubarb and lemon vodka is a steal at £20.


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

For something so affordable, this vodka honestly tastes *gourmet*! It’s perfect if (like me) you always forget to buy enough mixers – it’s gorgeous with just water, and it’s EXTRA lovely in cocktails. 

Price: £20.00 for 700ml.

6.

Literally every single thing from Lidl’s ‘Deluxe’ range.


NBC

Before I get into this, I do need to say that I *am* a known Lidl loyalist, but every time I use their ‘Deluxe’ range for get-togethers I manage to convert non-Lidl lovers too! If you try nothing else, please check out their cheese, wine, and dessert ranges – if you go back to your previous premium faves afterwards, I’ll eat my hat (not really, but I *will* keep eating this stuff).

✨Best mid-price munchies✨

7.

If you’re after a *truly* deceptive non-alcoholic alternative, this CleanCo ‘spirits’ range is the most true-to-life one I’ve ever tried.


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

It can be hard to make people who don’t drink feel included over the festive season, and a lot of alcohol-free alternatives are either boring, a little sickly, or both. These ones taste (and smell) amazingly close to gin, rum, and vodka, and they’re low-sugar as well! Check out how pretty these cocktails I made with ’em turned out (because non-drinkers deserve an IG-worthy ‘cheers’ story too!).

Price: £19.00 each – I tried the ‘gin’, ‘rum’, and ‘vodka’ flavours.

8.

This sloe gin and dark chocolate gift set is hands-down one of the tastiest things I’ve ever gotten. The chocolates and the gin are both hand-crafted, and 15% of profits will go towards African elephant preservation!


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

It took me a while to get on the gin train, but now that I have I’m a little obsessed. This sloe one is one of the best I’ve tried! It’s rich without being cloying and deep without being bitter, and the bottle has a gorgeous handmade bead band around its neck. And don’t even get me started on those dark chocolate truffles – I ate them weeks ago, and I still think about ’em all the time.

Price: £42.90 for 500ml gin and five dark chocolate meringue truffles (guys, they’re really good). 


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

I’m not usually a fan of how heavy and dense beers can be, but these ones are genuinely refreshing! They taste really light and crisp, which is perfect if (like me) you’re pretty much constantly in a post-food fog around this time of year.

Price: £2.20 per can.

10.

I’m beginning to regret all the years I lived without knowing about this festive Mr Ames selection!


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

I’d never heard of these before, but now that I’ve tried them I’m struggling to go back to any other brand of tea. The ‘Festive Fudge’ flavour genuinely makes my tea taste of caramel, and the ‘Chilly Chocolate’ one has all the deliciousness of hot chocolate *without* the faff. Oh, and the ‘Winter Berry’ one is perfectly-balanced too! 

Price: £6.50 for one pack of 20 teabags.


Crosstown Bakery

My flatmates and I absolutely lost it when we ate these for the first time – we’d never tried any doughnuts that are as well-balanced as these are! They’re made from a sourdough that gives them incredible depth, and it keeps them from being too sweet too. The toppings are perfectly-chosen (if you ever get the chance to try the chocolate pecan option, I’m begging you to take it). Other flavours include matcha and cranberry and miso caramel!

Price: from £22.95 for six doughnuts.


12.

Oh, and their ginger biscuits aren’t to be messed with either.


Crosstown Bakery

If you can’t tell from the picture, these chewy-but-crunchy bad boys are pretty much the PERFECT thickness. They have whole peanuts in them too, so the texture is varied – and the ginger flavour comes through really  well. 11/10 from me! 

Price: from £17.00.

13.

This THRIVE recipe box contained absolutely everything I needed to cook a Christmassy dinner for our entire flat (and no, there weren’t any leftovers).


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

First of all I should say that this recipe box is great value – the beef is really high-quality, and it contained every single thing I needed to cook a massive roast. Everything was pre-measured and perfectly-picked, so it was really easy (and low-waste) to cook with! I grew up in rural Ireland with loads of great locally-sourced beef so I’m PRETTY fussy, but this rib was incredible (check out their steak boxes too if you’re after a tasty NYE dinner!).

Price: £95.00 for the roast rib of beef box that feeds six.

✨The most splurge-worthy drinks✨


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

The production process of the ‘Luna’ Biodynamic whisky includes burying manure-packed cow horns, ploughing fields with horses over mechanical machinery, and sowing barley seeds according to the position of the moon (yes, really) – and the results are absolutely incredible. It tastes spicy, fruity, and ridiculously smooth! The Cuvée is a little sweeter and fruitier (it tastes of apples and cloves to me, making it perfect for the festive season).

Luna whisky price: €90.00 (or approx. £77.00)

Cuvée price: €75.00 (or approx. £64.00)


Amy Glover / BuzzFeed

It’s triple-matured in a Pedro Ximenez cask and two Vintage Port barriques, giving it a luxurious, almost wine-like finish. I love how well-rounded and richly smooth the finish is, and it’s made with heritage grains from sustainably-farmed biodiverse fields too!

Price: £150.00 for 70cl.


What are your fave cheap, mid-range, and *luxe* Christmas options? Share your best finds in the comments below!