Over the last seven months, the hospitality industry has had to pivot so fast and so frequently, it’s been head-spinning just to watch. From the abrupt, indefinite closure of restaurants bringing about ad-hoc take-away services and pop-up grocery stores, to managing socially distanced service amid the crowds of diners taking advantage of the government’s Eat Out To Help Out scheme, and then yet more closures and reinvention. Perhaps one of the most successful innovations we’ve seen in these trying times is the restaurant meal kit. Delivered to your address, and including all of the elements required to recreate your favourite meals with minimal effort, these boxes promise restaurant experiences at home.
With Christmas looking a little different this year, it’s not just restaurants who are having to rethink how we eat together and celebrate. Perhaps there are only a couple of you for Christmas dinner, rather than the normal crowd, and you’re looking to make Christmas feel special – or perhaps you’re spending the festive season without the resident Christmas chef for the first time, and keen to let someone else bear the culinary burden. Or maybe you just miss restaurants. Whatever the reason, restaurants have us covered, with lots of them creating Christmas-specific delivery boxes. Here we round up some of the festive offerings available.
A Christmassy Taste of Yorkshire
Chef Tommy Banks has prepared two different boxes for Christmas this year. There’s a Christmas dinner box, designed to take the place of Christmas lunch itself, which offers 5 courses including starters, a main course of turkey Ballotine with all the restaurant-style trimming (pigs In blankets, yorkshire puddings, brassica cheese, braised red cabbage, pommes anna, gravy, sourdough bread sauce), and a pudding, as well as root vegetable mince pies and a bottle of wine.
Their ‘Christmas provisions box’ is designed to provide everything you need outside of actual Christmas dinner: glazed ham, charcuterie, Courtyard Dairy cheeses, homemade mince pies, fudge, coffee, wine, and a lot more. There’s also a New Year’s Eve box which sounds fantastic: a 5-course meal for 2 people with sparkling wine and coffee including a beef wellington and a chocolate fondant. The Christmas Provisions box will arrive on doorsteps on 23 December; the Christmas Day box is delivered on Christmas Eve.
Proper steak and chips
The beloved steak restaurant has seen great success with their Hawksmoor at Home boxes, and are hoping to continue that over Christmas. The box – which serves two extremely generously – contains a starter of smoked salmon, soda bread and cream cheese, followed by fillet steaks, chips, creamed spinach, bone marrow & madeira jus, and finishes with sticky toffee pudding with clotted cream. Alongside this is a sour cherry negroni cocktail, Palmer & Co champagne and a bottle of Pulenta Malbec. Various delivery dates will be available.
Festive Hawksmoor at Home Box, £160 for 2, (nationwide delivery)
A British Christmas
Tredwells restaurant, headed up by renowned chef Chantelle Nicholson, has two boxes on offer for customers missing their high-end British fare. Their ‘classic’ Christmas box includes a 3 course meal; customers can create their own menu choosing those courses from options which will include turkey and sticky toffee pudding, as well as festive variations on some of Tredwell’s most loved dishes.
If you fancy a little more indulgence, you can go for their ‘very bougie Christmas box’ which includes all of the above along with canapés, and a choice of 2 sides, including truffled cauliflower cheese and deep fried sprouts with bacon jam. There is also the option to add a bottle of fizz and some Christmassy truffles to both boxes. Boxes are available for collection or local delivery on 23rd December.
Tredwells Christmas Kits, from £45 for 1 person, (for collection or delivery within a 4 mile radius)
A ‘Drop-off’ Christmas dinner
When Covid-19 prevented two East London event caterers from carrying on business in their usual way, they teamed up to bring dinner to those missing good food across London, as well as feeding vulnerable residents at the London Irish Centre.
Polly Wedderburn and Emily Woollcombe-Adams have codified their pivot into a new company, Juniper & Co, and are now offering a plethora of festive dining options, including their ‘drop off Christmas Dinner Bundle’ which provides three courses of festive favourite choices including smoked salmon blini, brined, marinated and buttered turkey, beef wellington, generous trimmings and three Christmassy puddings. Deliveries available up to Christmas Eve.
Juniper & Co Christmas 2020, from £65 per person (London-wide delivery)
Turkey and all the trimmings
Elite Bistros are the group of restaurants including Sticky Walnut, Hispi and Burnt Truffle, set-up (and mostly crowd-funded) by chef, Gary Usher, and Elite at Home is their restaurant experience delivery company. They have four special Christmas boxes – traditional turkey and all the trimmings, 35 day dry-aged sirloin of beef on the bone and all the trimmings, roasted butternut squash and all the trimmings, or just the trimmings – with box sizes catering for 2, 4 or 6 diners.
Alongside the trimmings you’ll get potted mackerel or Lincolnshire poacher cheese and sourdough crackers, and whisky and brandy soaked Christmas pudding with cultured brandy butter with orange marmalade plus pistachio & salted lemon fudge. Deliveries will arrive by courier on Wednesday 23rd December.
Elite Bistros ‘Turkey and all the trimmings box, from £109 for two (nationwide delivery)