As Noddy Holder puts it, “iiiiiit’s Chrissssstmassss!!” - with that in mind, cocktail blogger The Mixolosopher has made a list (and checked it twice) of Scottish drinks gifts that are both naughty AND nice.

Pickering’s Festively Flavoured Gin Baubles

It just wouldn’t be Christmas without a festooned fir tree taking up space in the living room.

Pickering’s knew this when they launched their gin-filled baubles to an eager public in 2016 and this year the ante has been well and truly upped.

Each of the six be-ribboned spheres is filled with a different festive flavour of Pickering’s gin – including figgy pudding, spiced pear & cinnamon and Brussels sprout – which, I’m reliably informed, tastes infinitely better than it sounds!

Packs can be purchased from the Pickering’s online shop, alongside boxes of their original baubles. They can also be purchased at Pickering’s hut in the Princes Street Christmas Market.

A donation will go to the Re-engage Community Christmas Campaign from the sale of every pack of Festively Flavoured baubles.

For more information visit their website.

Rock Rose Gin Crackers

If hanging drinkable ornaments on your tree wasn’t enough, you can spice up the Christmas dinner with Dunnet Bay Distillers’ gin crackers, which each contain a 50ml miniature of Rock Rose Original.

Or, if gin’s not your thing, they have a special release Cold Brew Coffee edition of their Holy Grass vodka infused with artisanal roasted coffee. Ideal for a sumptuous spin on an espresso martini or just sipped over ice.

Visit the Dunnet Bay Distillers online shop for more details.

Daffy’s Christmas Gin Cards

This award-winning distillery nestled in the Cairngorm National Park has released a double-infused Christmas edition of their Scottish gin. Festive spices and clementines are macerated in the gin both before and after distillation, accentuating the flavour and imparting a warm orange haze to the gin, as well as a hint of natural sweetness.

Each 50ml miniature bottle comes boxed as a Christmas card (helpfully pre-stamped with postage) to send out to any deserving friend or family member – who can then enjoy it on the rocks with an orange twist or add to a warm mixture of milk, cream, honey, vanilla and a sprinkle of nutmeg for a delicious, warming winter cocktail.

Cards can be ordered directly from Daffy’s online shop.

Fierce Spirits Juniper+ Range

After making a name for themselves with some incredible beers, Aberdeen-based Fierce dove head-first into distilling. Their latest venture is Juniper-plus (stylised as Juniper+) – essentially gin deconstructed.

Fierce have released eight small batch distillations using juniper and just one other botanical for each iteration. The plus-ones which the juniper bring along to the party range from more traditional gin botanicals like cassia bark, lemongrass, cardamom, pink peppercorn and even another helping of juniper to a couple of curveballs like blood orange and Carolina Reaper chillies.

Bottles come in 100ml sizes to encourage people to experiment with mixing their own unique gin blend at home. They can be ordered in any combination and are presented in a branded jute bag, along with flavour cards featuring tips on how to mix and blend the different distillates.

For more information, check out the Fierce website.

Buck & Birch Gift Packs

If gin’s not your thing (or, indeed, not the thing of your gift recipient) then you can celebrate the wild bounty of the Highlands with this twin-pack of Scottish liqueurs.

The pack contains a 20cl bottle of Aelder Elixir – a wild elderberry liqueur with rich fruit and spicy notes – and a 20cl bottle of Amarosa Rosehip – a rum-based liqueur with floral, herbal sweetness. Both are handcrafted from locally picked seasonal ingredients. And both mix rather well with gin, incidentally!

For more information visit Buck & Birch or the Aelder online shop.

Edinburgh Beer Factory

This year EBF are releasing a limited Winter Edition of their popular Paolozzi Vino beer in a celebration of Europe.

Aged for 8 weeks in dry and sweet white Burgundy wine barrels, the beer is then infused with a mix of winter spices – resulting in a deep, apricot hue and a cockle-warming 7.4%abv.

The beer is sold in hand-sealed 75cl bottles and is designed to be shared, sipped and savoured alongside a rich slice of Christmas cake or a warm mince pie.

Bottles are £15 each and can be bought from the EBF online shop.

Summerhall Drinks Lab

Finally, if you’re after a little winter warmth, the Summerhall Drinks Lab are holding a Mulled Masterclass throughout December.

Learn about the art and science of mulling and infusing while sipping on some signature serves all utilising Scottish ingredients – including Summerhall’s own Pickering’s Gin and Barney’s Beer.

The hour-long session culminates in getting to create your own mulling spice blend. Spaces are limited – and for £15 they’ll be selling like hot toddies!

Tickets, availability and information can be found on the Summerhall Drinks Lab website.

About The Author

Iain Meldrum

Iain Meldrum (aka Mixolosopher) has over a decade of experience at the top of the drinks industry as both a bartender and trainer. He is passionate about all things alcoholic - though in a responsible and philosophical way, of course.

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