Big Boys Toys
Here are some gadgets and gifts perfect for your Christmas stocking!
Klokers has launched a limited edition wristwatch that harks back to the days before computers and pocket calculators, where a slide rule was the tool of choice for complex calculations. The KLOK-01 display is a graphical representation of a slide rule, using three rotating rings to display the time along a vertical red line. The rings – one each for hours, minutes and seconds – rotate at different speeds, animating the whole dial, while an integrated magnifying lens ensures legibility. And the innovation doesn’t stop there as the 44mm composite case is designed to securely clip on and off a patented docking “jewel” on a range of bracelets – allowing the owner to match their mood and clothing. Costs around £270. www.klokers.com
It is vital that a top sommelier be able to identify ingredients or subtle tones within drinks, so as to be able to offer their customers the very best. Taste and colour are two of the senses but the real experts use the ‘nose’ of a wine or whisky to determine its characteristics and qualities. But how do they train their sense of smell…and how can you do the same? Well the secret is out! Aspiring experts have used Jean Lenoir’s ‘Le Nez du Vin’ for years, rightly establishing it as the go-to reference work. Set in a sophisticated red case, 54 superb quality aromas come to life in your scent memory for you to recognize in fine wines. 54 index cards then explain the real link between aromas and wine, and a guidebook full of rich illustrations and practical exercises teaches you how to taste wines the world over. Le Nez du Vin is such a fabulous learning tool for amateur and professional wine lovers that the range has now been extended to encompass whisky and coffee aromas too. The perfect gift for anyone in the trade, training not only your nose but also allowing you to challenge your colleagues in a game of the senses. Available online and from Birchgrove Products at around £260. Smaller six and 12 aroma sets available too.
Already a firm favourite with aficionados, the Aerobie AeroPress is increasingly making its presence felt in boutique coffee shops across the land. Truly great tasting coffee comes from having the proper brewing temperature, total immersion brewing and rapid micro filtering and the AeroPress is designed to optimise these factors. Lightweight and portable, the AeroPress produces American-style coffee or an espresso-style shot in just 30 seconds. Simply follow the instructions and away you go. But beware…there are LOTS of AeroPress fans out there who have posted videos on YouTube on how to make the very best brew, including top Baristas. This gift could take over your (coffee drinking) life! Around £25 from www.aeropress.co.uk
Made to the high standard synonymous with the name Kilner, this is a stylish addition to any kitchen. Butter making is simplicity itself. Pour 300ml of whipping cream into the Kilner-branded glass container; pop the lid with integral whisk on; churn away and in 10 minutes or so, you’ve made 110g of butter, plus buttermilk left over for a pancake or two. And for professional caterers the ‘churner’ gives the fun option of letting customers whip their own cream at the table, adding plenty of theatre to the dining experience. Supplied with step-by-step instructions and a selection of recipes, the Kilner Butter Churner costs around £20. www.kilnerjar.co.uk
Make a real impact with this super-sized shaker. Offered in either highly polished or brushed stainless steel, the 1.7 litre capacity allows you to make cocktails for a party group, all in one go. And, with a recent report of the amount of wasted units consumed by barmen and mixologists as they taste every cocktail, this shaker is a game changer – one taste, six or seven cocktails. Eye-catching, practical and a real conversation piece all in one go. Around £50 from www.birchgrove.co.uk