Alternative Xmas Dining Drinks - New Online Guide Launched

Take a Different Look at Christmas Drinks This Year

If you want to spice up this year's Christmas dining with a selection of drinks, look no further than Friends of Glass and drinks educator of the year, Jane Peyton. Together, they bring you the essential guide to alternative festive drinks and argue that beer and cider are the best partners for your food choices this Christmas. 
In recent times, both beer and cider have undergone a huge surge in popularity. Partly driven by the rise of craft beers and premium ales, there are now more breweries per capita in the UK than any other country.
New cider brands have transformed the choice of great ciders on offer in the shops, with many styles now available.
Jane Peyton believes that both beer and cider are great British options for pairing with your food this
Christmas. She says: “With a huge range of brilliant beers and ciders now widely available, there's never been a better time to explore these wonderful gifts from nature.”
“Both beer and cider are perfect for lightening the richness of heavy meals due to the carbonation they contain. What's more, Christmas dinner is a lengthy meal so beer and cider, which are usually lower in alcohol than wine, are less likely to tip you over the top of the recommended number of alcohol units at the dinner table - and perhaps leave more room to party afterwards.”
The guide, which is available to download on the Friends of Glass website                          ( or via the link, offers a range of
suggestions for pairing beer and cider with different foods at Christmas. It also advises on suitable
glassware for serving your beer and cider at the dining table. For instance, an Indian Pale Ale makes a great aperitif in a Champagne flute and a cider served with smoked salmon looks and tastes great in a Loire wine glass.
Jane adds: “There's no place for big ugly pint glasses on your Christmas table and it's an outdated notion to
think that beer needs to be served in such a way. You can get more from the flavour and taste experience
of your beer or cider if you are a little more imaginative about the glassware you choose.”
And it's not just how you serve up your beer and cider that can affect the taste. Glass bottles have always
been the best way to buy beer and cider: glass is simply the best at preserving taste, and what's more it's
best at protecting your health (unlike cans, no chemical layer is required to keep the contents fresh) and for
taking care of the environment as glass is made of naturally occurring raw materials and is 100%
For more ideas on matching food to beer and cider and the best glassware for serving it this Christmas, look
no further than The Essential Guide to Alternative Festive Drinks at
Here's a great alternative after dinner 'cocktail' from Friends of Glass and Jane Peyton to give you a taster:
The Big Smoke Winter Cockt-Ale
Soothing, warming and oh-so more-ish!
1 x 500ml bottle of porter (a dark beer brewed by several breweries including Fuller's)
1 x 500ml of medium dry cider (such as Cornish Orchards Gold)
Add a sprinkle of smoked paprika
If serving mulled, gently warm the drink on the hob
Serve in a tulip or snifter glass
Garnish with a cinnamon stick as a stirrer
Accompany with a couple of slices of crisp smoked apple to nibble on (sprinkle with Smoked paprika too if


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