Often a fallback present idea for those friends and relatives who are hard to buy for because they already seem to have everything, the right wine gift will always be welcome.
The trick is to know your recipient – don’t get them something they already have, and to avoid gimmicks that might be fun once or twice but will then get relegated to the back of a kitchen cabinet.
This carefully curated selection of Christmas gifts for wine lovers offers something thoughtful and unique at every price point. I’ve shared some of my favourite ideas but encourage you to do your research and get something that really reflects the personality and style of your recipient.
Waiter’s Friend Bottle Opener
Every wine buff needs a classic ‘waiter’s friend’ style bottle opener. I have this one from Le Creuset – it’s weighty, stylish, well-made and will last forever.
At £32 this is one of the more affordable Le Creuset items and makes a great gift for anyone serious about their wine.
Wine Chill Stick
So, this looks like a bit of a gimmick, but I actually used mine a lot after receiving it as a gift a few years ago. The idea is that you freeze it in advance and then stick into your open bottle of wine. It keeps your bottle of wine chilled, so you don’t need to keep going back and forth to the fridge. It is really handy for those evenings when you’ve opened a bottle of white or rose and want to stay put on the sofa or in the garden but enjoy your wine over a few hours.
Our ‘Corkcicle AIR’ lasted a couple of years before slightly falling apart so it’s not the most durable item, but it’s a fun gift, especially for someone who likes their rose on a Summer evening!
I haven’t tried this one myself, but as it’s made of stainless steel rather than plastic it might be a bit more long-lasting – and it’s available at a similar price to the Corkcicle.
Wine Vacuum Pump
These are a relatively new innovation – a cheap but effective solution to the challenge of opening a bottle of wine, especially bubbles, but only wanting a glass or two. Ideal for solo drinkers or if you want to limit your consumption without waste!
The pump creates a vacuum in your wine bottle which preserves it and keeps it fresh for longer.
World Atlas of Wine
A proper coffee-table book is always appreciated by food and drink aficionados, and the World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson is the classic of the genre. Now on it’s 8th edition, it’s the winner of multiple awards and recognised as the authority on wine from around the world.
The current edition includes a huge number of maps and beautiful photography and will keep any wine lover entertained and informed.
Wine Decanter Gift Ideas
Every wine lover needs a beautiful glass decanter to serve their special bottle of red at dinner parties. I received mine as a wedding present a few years ago. It was from John Lewis and doesn’t seem to be available any longer, but this is a fairly close match (although I don’t think ours was anywhere near as expensive!) We went for one with a very wide base to maximise the surface area.
John Lewis has a huge selection of decanters including different shapes, styles and accessories. I remember a very special meal at a Michelin starred restaurant in Budapest where our wine was served from the most beautiful decanter – it took about a minute for the wine to travel through the snake-like contraption but was definitely a talking point. If I was going to invest again, I’d love this simple but statement decanter.
A controversial gift choice, as most wine lovers will already have their own preferred glasses and want to choose their own styles. However, if you have a younger friend or relative who is into their wine but maybe has just bought their own home or hasn’t had the cash to splash on nice glassware, this is a great gift.
I received a full set from a very generous relative as a wedding present, and sensibly went for a glass that works equally well for white or red wine – if you can be bothered to wash up multiple sets of glasses in your own home, you are more dedicated than me! My glasses don’t seem to be available anymore, but once again, John Lewis comes up trumps with a huge selection at good prices.
The trend these days is for wine tumblers rather than traditional glasses with stems, and these are a funky option and especially good for your more clumsy / riotous wine-loving friends. There are different shapes for different wines but these from LSA International are some of the most elegant I’ve seen.
My in-laws have a full set of these acrylic wine glasses and we use them all Summer. They are great for going from indoors to outdoors and give the feeling of a special occasion without the risk of smashing.
This is a great housewarming present if you want to go beyond the traditional houseplant and bottle of fizz.
There are so many options that you’ll want to do your research to ensure your choice works with the interiors style of your recipient.
I love this classic wooden 28 bottle rack from made.com.
Oliver Bonas does a good line in affordable, gold metal wine racks. Their capacity isn’t huge, but they are super stylish and would be a great gift for someone with gold hardware in their kitchen.
For a real statement for special bottles only, this freestanding 8 bottle rack from Funky Chunky Furniture is a great option.
Finally, I love these beautiful wooden racks that would be equally at home in a modern or traditional home.
Christmas Cheese Selection
A little left-field, but for a proper treat especially around Christmas, a cheese hamper will be enjoyed by all wine-lovers (other than the lactose intolerant…)
CheeseWorks have put together this ‘sparkle and shine’ cheese box for Christmas 2020, and it includes 6 different cheeses to make the perfect Christmas cheeseboard to enjoy with wine.
Fortnum & Mason are rightly the main name in the world of luxury food and wine – just seeing the logo is special. If I opened a gift containing this 4kg wheel of truffled brie I think I’d be pretty speechless. Probably best to buy for when you know a group gathering is approaching…4kg is a lot for any household.
If you want to give both wine and cheese in one delicious package, this offering from BoroughBox combines a bottle of Pinot Noir with a selection of cheese, biscuits and chutney.