The best food (and drink) gifts to bring to year-end parties
Let the festive feasting begin
By now, our end-of-the-year calendars are packed with Christmas dinners, New Year’s parties and friends and family gatherings. Once you are done fretting over ‘what to wear’, start planning on ‘what to bring’. An edible gift is always welcome, because everyone has to eat (and some of us have to drink to get through the holiday season!).
Whether it’s a potluck meal, or a drinks and nibbles soirée, here is a list of the finest food and drink gift ideas that’ll keep your hosts happy and well fed.
There’s something about the festive season that has everyone is in the mood for eggnog (yup, even in the tropics). A easy and delicious way to bring eggnog to a year-end party is via SPRMRKT’s decadent Eggnog Bread Pudding.
A boozy take on the traditional dessert, the bread pudding is soaked with eggnog, baked with a butter-rich pastry top, and finished with a rich eggnog anglaise. Festive pre-orders can be placed by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or at one of their outlets at least three working days in advance.
SPRMRKT is at Cluny Court, 501 Bukit Timah Road 02-13, and two other locations.
The dessert artists over at Janice Wong present the most beautiful and delicious festive confections, that will definitely impress any party hosts. Whatever your budget, choose from specially curated hampers that include their quirky and creative Chocolate Paint Jar Sets ($59 for a set of five), where a selection of coloured chocolate paint flavours with paint brushes and an acrylic board will allow party guests to create an edible art canvases.
There is also the Crayon Box ($38), a set of eight chocolate crayons in multiple colours and flavours. Each box comes with a canvas and edible rice paper. Hampers that include these, and more, begin at $150.
Hampers are for pre-order via https://www.janicewong.online/shop/ or instore at B1 K-28 Paragon, 290 Orchard Road and three other outlets.
It may be tradition to simmer batches of hot, spiced wine at home to serve friends and family over the festive season, but why go through all that trouble when the best bar in Asia (and No. 3 in the world, according to the World’s 50 Best Bars 2018 list) is selling an excellent bottled version.
Manhattan’s Mulled wine (available in red and white) is priced at $98 for 700ml. It’s money well spent for their aromatic brew of orange, cognac, red or white wine, cinnamon, cloves and star anise. The flavours are deliciously festive, and the cognac pours are generous, resulting in a potent drink that will be a hit at any festive gathering.
Available at The Regent Singapore’s Festive Booth located in the Lobby, from Nov 19 to Dec 26. +65 6725 3244 and http://shop.regentsingapore.com.sg/
For a welcome twist this festive season, add dishes from a Eurasian yuletide celebration to your year-end feasts. At Folklore, Chef Damia D’Silva’s has prepared a slew of heritage dishes with recipes passed down by his grandfather. A welcome addition to a holiday potluck party is the Indian-style Dry Mutton Curry ($45++) where the meat is cooked with dry spices like cumin, fennel, coriander seeds, mustard seeds, cinnamon, star anise, cloves, pepper, and a spice paste.
The Sugee Cake ($54 for 1kg) will be a hit with both grown ups and children, it’s buttery-rich and moist yet light and nutty with a crumb of almond meal. Available from 14 to 31 December. Takeaway orders need to be placed five days in advance.
Folklore is at https://www.parkhotelgroup.com/en/destinationbeachroad/folklore
Turkey and gammon ham are so been-there-done-that, if you want to show up at a Christmas soiree with a truly luxe food gift, look to the St. Regis Singapore’s festive takeaways. There is the Homemade Smoked Salmon (serves four, $90++) that has been Marinated for 24 hours before being smoked with apple wood chips and coated with the St. Regis Tea blend in powder form.
It comes with asparagus and egg whites, shaved truffles and truffle brioche bread. Alternately, the Homemade Foie Gras Terrine (serve four, $108++) comes with fig compote, a truffle-infused dark chocolate sauce and truffle brioche bread.
Festive orders can be placed via https://www.brasserielessaveurs.com/en/festive2018
Be the little ones’ favourite aunt or uncle by showing up with kiddie-approved cupcakes. PARKROYAL on Pickering have a special range of cupcakes that are adorably decorated with festive motifs like santa, snowmen and X’mas trees. These come in flavour combinations like a Chocolate Yuzu cupcake which has a yuzu cremeux and guanaja chocolate chantilly, the Pandan Coconut Cupcake With desiccated coconut panna cotta and pandan chantilly.
For those who love the pungent fruit, there is the Durian Gula Melaka which has a gula melaka chantilly cream and a durian centre. They are priced at $6 each or available as an assortment of eight for $38.
Orders can be placed via this form, and three days in advance. PARKROYAL on Pickering, 3 Upper Pickering Street and parkroyalhotels.com/pickering
While everyone is the mood to wine and dine over the festive season, if your hosts are teetotalers (or just watching their alcohol units), we have just the gift for them. Seedlip is a distilled non-alcoholic spirit that mimics the flavours of gin. Available in two variations, the Seedlip Garden 108 with flavours of spearmint, rosemary and thyme; and the Seedlip Spice 94 which is aromatic with spicy notes of cardamom, allspice berries, lemon and oak.
Both varieties are free of sugar, artificial flavours and calories, plus a Seedlip and Tonic is easy to put together and similar to sour-style non-alcoholic cocktails, so no one feels left out. Available at Temple Cellars for $70++ per 700 ml bottle.
Temple Cellars is at UE Square #01-12, 81 Clemenceau Avenue; https://www.templecellars.com
There are log cakes aplenty to be had in Singapore, and flavours range from the traditional to the new-fangled. If you are bringing a yule log to a year-end party, pick a locally-inspired one like House of Mu’s (11 Mohamed Sultan Rd, tel: 6732 1011) Chendol Log Cake ($48) is an excellent choice, where the cake boasts a chendol jelly-pudding centre made from mung bean flour and pandan leaves.
It has a base of mango mousse and is topped with a passionfruit glaze and looks as delicious as it tastes. Another worthy option is Pan Pacific’s Pacific Marketplace’s decadent D24 Durian Pandan Log Cake ($70 for 1kg) is where a soft pandan sponge has been rolled with pure D24 durian flesh and whipped cream before being coated in light gula melaka cream.
You are guaranteed to be labelled ‘favourite party guest’ if you show up with a turkey with all the trimmings. Not just any turkey though, Song of India’s Whole Tandoori Turkey Stuffed with Porcini Mushroom Biryani is aromatic and spice-laden and makes for a flavourful alternative to the traditional festive bird .
A limited-edition offering, it’s marinated overnight with chili powder, tandoori garam masala, mustard oil and cumin, and then grilled in the tandoor to ensure an evenly-grilled exterior and juicy flesh. The stuffing is a porcini mushroom biryani that has slow-cooked basmati rice flavoured with spices and saffron. The turkey is served alongside a sweet, tomato-based wine sauce and a creamy, yogurt sauce that pairs with the biryani. Priced at $136, it’s available for take away from 20-31 Dec and preorders need to be made at least three days in advance.
The Song of India is at 33 Scotts Road, and http://thesongofindia.com/
Your party hosts would have taken care of most of the food and drink at their year-end do, but if you show up with one of Dolcetto by Basilico’s decadent cheese platters – we assure you they will be wiped clean. These are a selection from Basilico’s dedicated cheese room, hand-picked and carefully sourced Italian varieties by Chefs Angelo Ciccone and Luca Beccalli.
Options include Fiore Sardo (a hard, sheep’s milk cheese from Sardinia), Gorgonzola (pungent, veined, Italian blue cheese), Pecorino Toscano (firm, ewe’s milk cheese from Tuscany) and several more. Choose from three, or six kinds of cheese and the platters come with condiments like bread, nuts, fruit and more. Priced at $42 for 300g onwards.
Place orders via https://connect.reddotpayment.com/instanpanel/instanpay/index/dolcetto-by-basilico-festive-order-form
Anybody who loves their artisanal cup of joe would have heard of Hook Coffee’s freshly brewed whole, ground or drip coffees and nifty coffee subscription. Rock up to a year-end party with a Hook Coffee Advent Calendar featuring 24 individually packed 10g sachets of drip coffee.
Your hosts will enjoy opening up a new sachet each day, and coffee flavours include the festive Winter Wonderland with tasting notes of mixed berries and mulled wine, and even the Speculose Your Mind with spicy, cinnamon notes. They source beans from all over the world so rest assured, no two sachets are alike.
Each calendar is $49, pre-order via https://hookcoffee.com.sg/coffees/christmas-special
A comforting cup of tea is a great way to unwind after a fabulous and filling festive meal. Here’s where your gift comes in handy. T2’s Christmas collection features a delicious limited edition tea, in a book-shaped box.
A Trifle Delicious ($30) is a loose-leaf sweet tisane of fruity flavours of apple, grapes, black chokeberry, elderberries and even white chocolate and creamy vanilla custard. For a party with guests of varied interests, take along the A Tea Party for Twenty ($25) which includes 20 sachets of T2’s popular flavours like French Earl Grey, Gorgeous Geisha and Southern Sunrise.
Available from 7 Nov onwards at T2 stores island wide, including #01-06/07, Great World City 1 Kim Seng Promenade and https://www.t2tea.com/en/sg/