Hand-picked places to eat, stay, shop & cook in the South West

Christmas cocktail cabinet

Published on November 27, 2019
Home » Good stuff » Features » Christmas cocktail cabinet

Drinks cupboard looking a bit barren ahead of the party season? Mark and Andrew Rowe, founders of Constantine Stores in Cornwall, share their essential picks for a stellar Christmas drinks collection

Drinks Finder, Constantine Stores

‘We’ve over 7,000 wines, beers and spirits at Constantine Stores, but Andrew and I know that you needn’t splash out on a bottle-shop’s worth of drinks when hosting a festive party,’ says Mark. ‘Choosing just five or six quality bottles will form a solid base for your drinks offering and ensure there’s something for every party-goer.’

Gin: Caspyn Cornish Dry Gin

A crisp G&T is still the South West’s favourite drink order and no party would be complete without a seriously good bottle of local gin. Caspyn’s small batch Cornish Dry is made at Long Rock in Penzance and is a delightfully light and floral gin which is both juniper and citrus led. Serve with your favourite tonic, lots of ice and a twist of orange.

Sparkling wine: Camel Valley Brut

Whether it’s New Year’s Eve, Christmas Day or a spontaneous festive get-together, a chilled bottle of English fizz is the perfect party starter. This fresh and fruity sparkler from Camel Valley is beautifully balanced with a touch of honey on the palate. And it’s not just our team at Constantine who love it – it’s also a favourite of the royal family who recently granted the Cornish vineyard a royal warrant.

Whisky: Old Ballantruan The Peated Malt

Ending the evening with a scotch by the fire is a long-held tradition we can all get on board with when it’s wintry outside. Fans of peat will love this smoky single malt from Speyside Glenlivet. Prefer something spicy? Glen Scotia Double Cask yields notes of rich spiced fruit, sea spray and vanilla oak.

Cassis: Atlantic Distillery Cornish Creme de Cassis

This is your secret weapon for the easiest cocktail going: simply add a splash to a flute of chilled Camel Valley Brut and you’ve got a thoroughly Cornish Kir Royale. Hosting a dinner party? Serve it on the rocks paired with a decadent dark chocolate brownie.

Rum: Hattiers Rum

Spring water from Dartmoor is blended with oak-aged rums from the Caribbean and Central America in the creation of this Devon spirit. The golden pour works brilliantly in a Dark and Stormy but is equally moreish over ice as a sipping rum.


Also try

The Greenbank

Yohann Thuillier, bar manager at The Greenbank Hotel, shares his recipe for orange and rosemary infused gin

John Hall from Trevethan Distillery

Confused about how to pick the cream from the vast crop of gins out there? How to tell what's "craft" and what's not – and even what that means?

Gin Guide

Tired of dropping present hints and still finding another pair of lacklustre socks under the tree? It’s time to steer ‘Father Christmas’ in the right direction