19 gifts for whisky lovers this Christmas - from budget-friendly bottles to accessories - including Jura, Arran and Glengoyne 

If you’re shopping for a whisky fan, take a look at our Christmas gift guide.

Published 7th Dec 2023
Updated 11 th Dec 2023

From bottles of whisky for £40 or under to accessories, limited editions and buys from independent shops, there’s something for all dram fans this Christmas.

The Good Spirits Company single cask Glengoyne

This Glasgow business is an ideal pit stop for drinks gifts this Christmas.

Choose from gift sets including White Box cocktails, or why not try their own bottled creations?

The team also has a 16 year old Merchant’s Choice Sherry Cask (£250), quite a rare thing, which you can find out more about here.

For something a bit different, there’s a virtual whisky tasting available online for £30. It’s taking place on Saturday 20 January from 7-9pm. More information is here.

Personalised Firkin Whisky

Available from Top Whiskies for £84.95, you can personalise a bottle of whisky. There are three single cask bottlings to choose from:

  • Firkin Ten, Benrinnes 2008 in custom madeira cask - rich and lively
  • Firkin 49, Tullibardine 2012 in custom oloroso and amontillado cask - soft and nutty
  • Firkin Rare, Teaninich 2010 in tawny port cask - luscious fruit

You can then personalise the bottle label and gift box label and it’ll be sent out to you in time for the big day. Find out more here.

Whisky Me subscription boxes

Recipients of a Whisky Me subscription will receive a gift box with a free whisky pouch to give a taster of the delights to come, as well as a code to redeem their subscription and access to an exclusive 10,000+ online community for rewards, offers and recommendations on everything from whisky hotels to gin distillery tours.

On the website you can pick a tasting pack, from £25 or a subscription, which include traditional (premium Scotch whiskies) and Discovery (premium whiskies from around the world) from £53.70.

Personalised bottle of Jura

Say it was a bottle of Jura, which you can personalise.

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The team at the distillery will personalise the label with whatever you want to put on it, and send you the label free of charge (along with the bottle of whisky you’ve bought).

Then, at home, all you need to do is apply the label to the bottle.

Find out more here.

The Glasgow Distillery FIODH whisky watches

The Glasgow Distillery has partnered with watch specialist FIODH to transform oak staves previously used to mature its flagship Glasgow 1770 Single Malt Scotch Whisky into a handcrafted timepiece.

Assembled in FIODH’s studio in Glasgow’s East End, the partnership has produced a limited run of two styles of whisky watch, available in natural oak and in black.  

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An initial limited run of watches have been produced, retailing at £225 and available from the distillery’s website and from the distillery’s Princes Square pop up.  

A Sense of Place by Dave Broom

whisky books

In this latest book, award winning writer Dave Broom examines Scotch whisky’s links to landscape, agriculture, culture and community.

Starting in Orkney he travels south via the north east coast and Spey Valley to the westerly peninsulas and Hebridean islands, before his journey finishes, via the blenders of the central belt, on the island of Islay.

The trip also follows Scotch’s history from Neolithic brewers to today’s innovators, a tale told by distillers, but also musicians, writers and poets.

Broom considers what it means to make whisky in these places, how a distillery reflects place in its flavour, and what its role is within its community.

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Priced at £38, buy it here from independent booksellers.

Larkfire new kids on the block tasting kit

Premium whisky for water, Larkfire, has a range of tasting kits ideal for those looking to get into whisky or for connoisseurs.

The new kids on the block kit features three newly released whiskies - 50ml Wolfburn Northland Single Malt Scotch Whisky, 50ml Nc’Nean Organic Single Malt Scotch Whisky and 50ml Lindores Lowland Single Malt Whisky MCDXCIV plus two 150ml cans Larkfire Wild Water for Whisky.

There’s also individual tasting notes for each of the whiskies.

Priced at £36, you can find out more and buy here.

Drinks Biscuits Drinker’s Gift Set

Fresh from landing a highly coveted Gold Award for savoury biscuits presented by legendary chef Raymond Blanc OBE at the Great British Food Awards 2023 and after scoring a hat-trick with their third successive victory at the Scotland Food and Drink Excellence Awards, The Discerning Drinker’s Gift Set from Scottish premium savoury snack brand The Drinks Bakery will make the ideal Christmas stocking-filler for the foodie and whisky fan in your life.

Priced at £11.95, this stylish collection features all four of their signature Drinks Biscuits varieties (36g) and includes two coasters in a special presentation box – ideal as a gift to present to your host or hostess at Christmas drinks and occasions.

Drinks Biscuits are savoury biscuits, thoughtfully crafted to balance with and enhance the character of your favourite drink.

The pack contains: Parmesan, Toasted Pine Nuts and Basil – ideal with craft lagers and fruity white wines; Lancashire Cheese and Spring Onion – delicious paired with Speyside cask-finished whisky and bitter beers; Pecorino, Rosemary and Seaweed – superb served with a G&T or gin cocktails; and Mature Cheddar, Chilli and Almond – the ideal partner for ciders and Malbec style red wines.

Tour of Port of Leith Distillery

Whisky Christmas gifts
Picture: Lisa Ferguson

Visit the UK’s first vertical whisky distillery where over the course of 90 minutes with your expert guide you will:

• Hear the story of the company’s unlikely conception.

• Fill your own miniature bottle with new make spirit.

• Taste your way through the production process in the beautiful purpose built Quality Control Tasting Laboratory.

• All complimented by outstanding views of Edinburgh and its scenic surroundings.

Tours are available Wednesday to Sunday and run every hour from noon to 8pm on weekdays, 7pm on Saturday and 5pm on Sunday. They cost £26 per person and there's more information here.]

SMWS membership and bottle of whisky

New for 2023, the gift of 12 months’ membership to the world’s biggest whisky club, The Scotch Malt Whisky Society (SMWS), now gives recipients a full 70cl bottle of the Society’s limited edition single cask single malt Scotch whisky with a new option to tailor the bottle to your taste (£129).

In past years, new members received a 50ml sample. The bottle is beautifully packaged in a stylish new presentation box.

How is the bottle tailored? Buyers will be asked four simple fun questions to help find a bottle of whisky that will match the recipient’s tastes and personality.

Or they can skip the questions and simply let the Society decide
What else do new Society members get: In a nutshell, a year of whisky exploration and discovery.

In addition to the full bottle and pack, which includes a membership card, pin badge and welcome magazine, new members get access to:

  • the Society’s ever-changing array of limited edition single cask single malt Scotch whiskies - around 20 new single cask, single malt bottlings each month
  • Access to the club’s Members' Rooms in Edinburgh, Glasgow, and London, where you can sign in up to three guests on each visit
  • Virtual and in-person whisky tastings, events, festivals and other whisky experiences
  • Society drams and discounts in around 100 SMWS partner bars around the world
  • Expert advice and personal guidance about whiskies from the Dram-cierge team tasting events, discounts in partner bars
  • A monthly magazine, Unfiltered, with the best in whisky writing and photography

Whiskies £40 or under

Whisky Christmas gifts
Picture: OurWhisky Foundation/Christina Kernohan

You don't need to spend a fortune on a bottle of whisky for yourself or a loved one this Christmas.

Here are some suggestions for £40 or under, with many from independent whisky shops.

Speyburn 10 Years Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky 70cl, £29.95, Whisky Shop Dufftown

Speyburn 10 years old single malt is matured in a combination of American Oak ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks.

A medium bodied malt, with hints of toffee and butterscotch and a long, the 10 Years Old truly embodies the rich, fresh sweetness of the Speyside region.

A global favourite, Speyburn 10 years old is ever the crowd-pleaser, making it a fantastic choice to gift this Christmas.

Find out more and buy here.

Old Pulteney 12 Year Old, £27.50, Luvians

Hailing from what was the most northerly distillery on the mainland, Old Pulteney is a wonderful example of a maritime malt, taking its character from the fishing village of Wick in which it is located.

Matured wholly in ex-bourbon casks, the Old Pulteney 12-years-old is the definitive expression in the Old Pulteney family.

Mixing the citrus fruit flavours of lemon and lime with honey and a hint of coastal sea air, it’s a distinctive character worthy of those looking for something a little more complex.

Find out more and buy here.

Arran Barrel Reserve, £29, Luvians

This whisky from the Isle of Arran is a fresh and light dram that’s ideal for cocktails and long drinks, as well as enjoying neat.

Buy it now at this special price from Luvians.

Seaweed & Maple Syrup & Butterscotch & Christmas Cake Whisky, £31.95, Master of Malt

This festive sounding whisky is currently on offer at Master of Malt.

From the team at &Whisky, it’s a flavourful, sweet dram with hints of smoke.

Ideal for Christmas as it’ll go well with cake and mince pies.

Cardhu - Gold Reserve, £36, The Speyside Whisky Shop

This easy to drink, sweet Speyside single malt is an ideal gift for a whisky fan as it’s lovely on its own, or in cocktails.

Buy it now from The Speyside Whisky Shop

Aberfeldy 12 year old in gold bar tin, £40

This Aberfeldy 12 Year Old, is presented in a gold bar gift tin, making it an ideal gift. Aberfeldy distillery continues to draw water from the Pitilie Burn, renowned for its promise of gold.

Time-honoured techniques, such as longer fermentation, conjure rare citrus and honeyed notes.

On tasting, you can expect spices and honeyed plump fruits with lots of vanilla and fudge - and just a whisper of smoke on the finish. 

A Taste Of Highlands Whisky Miniatures Set, £22.50, Aberdeen Whisky Shop

Arguably one of the lesser celebration regions of Scotch whisky, give the gift of the Highlands this Christmas with this tasting kit.

Inside there’s three single malt whiskies, chosen by Select Drams. Whiskies could include Loch Lomond, Deanston or Glenmorangie and the flavour profile is generally fruit, floral and heathery. 

Find out more and buy here.

Canadian Corn Whisky 8-Year-Old from That Boutique-y Whisky Company, £36.95

Delve into the distinct character of this sherried 8 Year Old Canadian corn whisky. Matured in 100% Oloroso casks, this is a reminder of the Canadian landscape, a spirited embodiment of the land's rich agricultural heritage.

On the nose there’s fruity muffins, buttery oak, opening up into sherried goodness: raisins, prunes, dates, drizzles of runny toffee and toasted nuts.

On the palate you may get big, bold, and fruity notes. Toffee ripple ice cream, wafer, and popcorn join toasted almonds and cooked peach, white cracks of black pepper nestle in the depths.

Find out more and buy here.

Whiskies of the World Tasting Set from Drinks by the Dram

The Whiskies of the World tasting set includes five 3cl samples of some of the world's best whiskies.

  • Stork Club Straight Rye Whiskey
  • Mackmyra Svensk Rök (Swedish Smoke)
  • Mars Kasei
  • Kavalan Distillery Select No.2
  • Starward Fortis

Priced at £27.95, you can find out more and buy here.

Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne, whisky and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind is the Food and Drink Editor and whisky writer for The Scotsman, as well as hosting Scran, The Scotsman's food and drink podcast.
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