Now I am well aware that we are long past the 12th day of Christmas and all the Christmas decorations and chatter should be safely locked away for another 11 months, however, I had a pretty fab time this year in the build up to Christmas and I’d like to share it with you.
I’m pretty sure that you will all have noticed at some point over the festive period someone, somewhere posting about their Gin-vent calendar. It is an advent calendar for grownups. Rather than being filled with a pretty picture and a few bits of chocolate, these advent calendars are filled with glorious little bottles of gin!
There are many on the market, Morrison’s were offering one priced at £60, the Edinburgh Gin advent calendar retailed at £100. Gin Foundry’s Ginvent calendar and one from Drinks by the Dram were available for £124.95 and the That Boutique-y Gin Company one was £99.95…this was the one I had!
The main difference (and problem) with these gin advent calendars is that you can’t enjoy it’s contents first thing in the morning…unless it’s the weekend, and I found myself trying hard to dodge social media all day in order to not ruin the surprise of finding out what was behind each door. I, of course, managed to overlook this minor fault because the contents of the advent calendar were so deliciously fabulous!
For those of you who have not heard of That Boutique-y Gin Company, they bottle delicious gins from the world’s best distilleries, brands and minds. Their labels are all hand illustrated and often incorporate an element of humour.
The guys at That Boutique-y Gin Company did an amazing job with this calendar, not only by selecting some incredible treats to hide behind the doors, but they also went the extra mile to help us all enjoy the gins. Boutique-y Brand Ambassador Steph DiCamillo posted festive ginspiration on a daily basis, giving recipe suggestions and perfect serves in the form of pictures and videos, all of which can be found in the Advent Serves section of their website.
I had a go at recreating some of the suggestions, but also came up with a few serves of my own.
Some of my personal favourites were the Hot Sauce Gin, this was always going to be a winner because I love anything with a bit of a kick. The Cobnut Ghost Gin which includes cobnut, rosehip, honey, hawthorne berries, raspberry juice and quince as some if it’s botanicals. I loved the Salty Dog cocktail which used World Gin Day Gin, then of course there was the Moonshot Gin, every gram of the botanicals used to make this gin was sent into near-space. It’s totally quirky and it got me hook, line and sinker! My Gin Buddy and I also had a great time creating our own chocolate orange cocktail using the Chocolate Orange Gin, which was absolutely delightful.
I had an amazing time making cocktails, taking photos and doing video unveils as I excitedly opened the doors each evening and I was genuinely sad when it was all over.
“But Christmas is all over you numpty, why are you still banging on about it?!”
…I hear you cry! Well listen in and I shall let you in on a secret plan I concocted. Advent may be a long way off, but these calendars cost money. Almost certainly money which becomes very easily spoken for as the big C arrives and you receive a letter via carrier pigeon telling you that your long lost Aunty Ethel and Uncle Norris are flying over to stay with you from Outer Mongolia and they are bringing with them their 5 children and a fish…all of whom you now have to by pressies for!
So I came up with a gin plan, I have a ginny bank, a little fund which I have already started putting money in, to save for my gin advent calendar this year. There are now 46 weeks left until 1st December 2018, lets take away an extra week to allow for postage because no one wants their calendar arriving late. That gives 45 weeks, if you can put away £2.50 a week until then, you will have £112.50, enough to buy yourself that delicious gin treat without it seeming like a sudden dent in your funds at an expensive time of year! I guarantee you will not be disappointed with your investment.
Happy Saving and Happy New Year!