We love the idea of a hamper here at GT, but too often we've been disappointed. So we set ourselves a challenge: to put together one of our own that's all killer and no filler. We partnered with our friends at Snowgoose and we present the first of our hampers - just in time for Christmas - with each item selected by the Gourmet Traveller team.
1 Will Studd Lincet Brillat Savarin
Our resident cheese expert, Will Studd, has hand-picked this lush Brillat Savarin from Didier Lincet, a producer in Champagne. It's as rich, sweet and velvety as they come and gets even better with time.
2 Le Roi Roquefort
This beautifully veined Roquefort, also selected by Studd, is a no-brainer for fans of the funk. Catering for a bigger crowd? Add a mighty one-kilo hexagon of ultra-creamy Le Dauphin brie as well.
3 Sheridan's Irish brown-bread crackers
All that cheese calls for a quality accompaniment. These Irish brown-bread crackers, made from stone-ground wholemeal flour with a touch of butter, buttermilk and sea salt, fit the bill perfectly.
4 Tabletop Grapes' muscatels
Grown outside Mildura, the Garreffa family's muscatel clusters bring a welcome touch of sweetness to the party platter. They're hand-picked and dried as a bunch without the use of chemicals - for our money the gold standard in dried grapes in Australia.
5 McClure's Bloody Mary potato chips
Based across Brooklyn and Detroit, the McClure brothers are best known for their killer pickles. Their crinkle-cut Bloody-Mary-flavoured potato chips, however, are certainly no mere afterthought. Seriously moreish stuff.
6 Rockpool beef jerky
Rockpool's wagyu jerky has long been a GT bar snack favourite. It's normally exclusive to their restaurant menus, but they've kindly made some especially for our party hamper.
7 Mason Clarke Preserving Co blackcurrant jelly
Mason Clarke's jams, jellies, chutneys and preserved fruits are handmade in small batches in Dimboola in country Victoria. We've chosen their blackcurrant jelly - best served on a cracker and (liberally) topped with cheese.
8 Montalto olives
Montalto's Koroneki olives grow wild throughout the Red Hill winery. They're hand-harvested, cured, and marinated with a touch of rosemary from the estate garden.
9 Bahen & Co chocolate
Reformed winemaker Josh Bahen sources the finest heritage cacao beans he can find and processes them at his Margaret River factory into beautifully balanced bars using antique chocolate-making machines and techniques.
10 St Ronan's pear cider
Our cider-loving wine editor, Max Allen, loves St Ronan's for its "gorgeous rich, complex pear aromas and a lovely soft, creamy texture". It pairs perfectly with the Brillat Savarin.
11 Baker D Chirico cheese straws
It isn't a party without cheese straws. Melbourne bakery Baker D Chirico's puff pastry numbers are covered with parmesan, paprika and spices, and are best enjoyed warmed from the oven.
12 Currong riberry shrub
Denyse McDonald crafts her shrubs (vinegar-based cordials) from native ingredients such as riberry and rainforest lime. The result? A fresh, Australian-accented cordial perfect for dressing up sparkling or still water, or adding to your favourite cocktails.
THE GOURMET TRAVELLER HAMPER
In collaboration with fine-food hamper specialist Snowgoose, we have designed the perfect gift (or treat for yourself), delivered to your door for $195 (including delivery). For a luxe option, add the 1kg Le Dauphin - an extra $75. To order, go to gourmettraveller.com.au/snowgoose. While stocks last.