Your Christmas shopping worries are over: some of toptable’s best restaurants have created Christmas hampers of such loveliness and deliciousness that they are guaranteed to send whoever receives them into a gastronomic frenzy. Followed, of course, by enormous gratitude to you, the tasteful giver.
sketch restaurant in Mayfair is actually several spaces: sketch Gallery, sketch Lecture Room and Library and sketch – the Glade. Each one is prettier and more playful than the last and has attracted a media-model-artistic clientele ever since it opened its doors. Of course it has, with Michelin starred chef Pierre Gagnaire and restaurateur Mourad ‘Momo’ Mazouz behind it. You’d expect the sketch hamper collection to be something incredible and so it is, a set of five hampers based on Alice in Wonderland and containing the highest quality provisions for any fantastical journey. Prices start at £150 and rise up, like Alice in her Eat Me Drink Me chapter.
Villandry’s food shop at its flagship Marylebone restaurant, if such a glorious incarnation of bakery, deli, bar and more can be called a mere ‘food shop’, has long been a favourite part of a visit to Villandry’s French restaurant. This Christmas a dedicated website leads you through a range of luxurious hampers bursting with creativity and indulgence, from The Scrooge (£40) to The Christmas Carol Deluxe (£200).
Cantina Vinopolis is the terrific restaurant of the Vinopolis Wine Experience and while they’re not exactly hampers, no one would mind having one of their Vinopolis in a Box deluxe wine gifts. Choices start at the Grapevine for £60 that includes a bottle of Vinopolis red or white wine and a pair of tickets to the Vinopolis Grapevine Tour and rise through several choices to arrive at the Oz Clarke in a Box for £120 that includes a bottle of red or white, tickets to the tour, a signed copy of Oz’s Pocket Wine Guide 2011 and a pair of tickets to Meet the Expert with Oz Clarke, the great man himself. Tasty.
Comptoir Gascon specialises in the cuisine of the southwest of France, and so do its food hampers. It would be kindest to yourself to book the restaurant then spend a leisurely half hour perusing the food hall, but the online thing is a godsend too, and hampers with optional wine range from the Piggy Treat at £52 to the Club Deluxe at £155, all stuffed to the gills with delights from the Aquitaine.
This year Michelin starred chef Alexis Gauthier left his longtime restaurant Roussillon to open Gauthier Soho, one of the few restaurants in London to offer serious, sensitive vegecentric food. The lovely townhouse restaurant also has a wine cellar and Gauthier is offering carefully selected wines for its Christmas hampers. The packaging is gorgeous too.