Introducing Hebridean Sea Salt

by Alice 27. May 2014 02:42

Wind swept. Rugged. Remote.


The Isle of Lewis is arguably one of the most beautiful islands in the Outer Hebrides.


A whirl of white sandy beaches, heather moorlands and serene sea lochs, you can see why Lewis draws visitors from all over the globe.


Alongside beautiful landscapes and bountiful wildlife, Lewis is increasingly establishing a name as the island of food and drink.



Leading the way is Natalie Crayton of Hebridean Sea Salt.


Founded on the shores of Loch Erisort in 2011, Natalie was inspired to start her sea salt business after trying – and failing – to source a Scottish salt for cooking.


With the majority of table salts laden with additives and anti-caking agents – which can leave a bitter aftertaste – Natalie managed to create a salt that was locally sourced and 100% pure as well.


“When people try Hebridean Sea Salt for the first time they often think it’s quite sweet. Some people describe it like ‘eating the ocean’!

“The waters of Loch Erisort have Grade A certification, meaning they are cleanest you can find. No purification required! Our salt is locally sourced, just steps from our door, from some of the most serene waters and unspoilt landscapes in the world."

As well as Natalie’s Pure Original sea salt, the company have also diversified; creating a series of delicious naturally flavoured salts that include Peat Smoked and Seaweed Infused varieties.



“People are increasingly using naturally seasoned salts as a quick and easy way to add a burst of flavour to their food.


“We’re also seeing people becoming more adventurous with salt, full stop! One of our favourite recipes is the ‘Hebridean Sling’. Simply pour 6cl of peated whisky – such as Talisker – into a cocktail shaker. Add 2cl of cherry brandy and the juice of half a fresh lemon. Shake over ice and pour into a Peat Smoked Salt rimmed highball glass.”

We’re delighted to include Natalie’s wonderful salts in our new Artisan Range.

Scrumptious Mackies Crisps

by Alice 12. May 2014 20:31

Here at Highland Fayre we work with many brilliant Scottish producers and right up there with the best of them is Mackies Crisps.

Formed in 2009 as a joint venture, Mackies of Scotland and potato farming-family, Taylors, joined forces to create Scotland’s first premium crisp brand.

Starting out with just three flavours, the range now encompasses thirteen; inspired by Scottish flavours and delicious foods galore.

Among the thirteen flavours is the iconic Haggis & Cracked Black Pepper, Flamegrilled Aberdeen Angus and the nice and spicy, Scotch Bonnet Chilli Pepper.


We had a chat with Rebecca at Mackies who told us that her personal favourite is the good ol’ Cheddar & Onion. As a flavour favourite, Rebecca has them on a Friday night and has been known to devour a whole pack!

If you’re looking for something a little quirky – look no further than the Mackie’s blog where they invited Martine Nouet the “Queen of the Still,” to provide pairing notes for some of Mackie’s crisps and choice whiskies. Pop over to their website for a look

Rebecca explained how this luxurious crisp can be enjoyed at any occasion; the Mackies mantra being “any excuse for a bag of Mackie’s crisps! We’ve even tried pairings which include matching the crisps with different types of sandwiches…even whisky!”

Rebecca also explained how new crisps are devised:

“New flavours are developed through brain storming in the office and lots of taste testing! What’s important is remaining true to our Scottish roots. At the moment we’re exploring how we can bring a Scottish twist to our ridge cut range. It’s all down to the taste.”

On that Rebecca, we couldn't agree more. Now, where's that bag of Ridge Cust Roast Ham?

Say Hello to Cocoa Ooze

by Mhairi MacLeod 1. May 2014 02:45

If you go down (or up!) to Aberdeen today you’re in for a big surprise…a big chocolatey surprise!

Say hello to Cocoa Ooze. A luxury, award-winning chocolatier started by Jamie Hutcheon in 2008 at the tender age of 17.

In just six years, Cocoa Ooze has grown to a team of over 35 people and now has two wonderfully indulgent coffee shops where visitors can enjoy a slice of chocolate heaven.

We spoke to Louise from Cocoa Ooze to find out what inspires their chocolates:

“The Cocoa Ooze range has been inspired by generations of family recipes. We are always keen to put our unique Cocoa Ooze stamp on anything we make though. 

“Take our white chocolate and raspberry popping candy for example. These chocolates are one of our most popular products and is a contemporary twist on the traditional. We try not to overcomplicate our flavour combinations. The key is to keep things simple but done well.”

Chocolate making needn’t be a dark art however, as Louise explains:

“Our workshops are a great opportunity to learn the art of chocolate making. For those who would like to try chocolate-making in their own home, here’s a quick and easy recipe for you to try!”


150g Cocoa Ooze milk chocolate (33% cocoa content)

50g Cream


·         Pour cream in a pan and weigh chocolate in a separate bowl

·         Wait until cream is starting to boil and pour over the chocolate 

·         Leave to stand for around 30 seconds

·         Stir to smooth consistency 

·         If not smooth as this point you will have to heat up slighty

·         Let it set in the fridge for around 24 Hours 

·         Mould into round balls and coat in chocolate, chopped fruit, nuts, cocoa powder or coconut as desired

Highland Fayre have long been fans of Jamie and his team’s work. Our personal favourites are Cocoa Ooze Chocolate snaps - super with a cup of coffee!


The count down to New Year

by Stewart 19. December 2013 19:17

With the festivities almost upon us our thoughts have turned to planning our New Year’s party!
Planning for another celebration as soon as Christmas is over can become stressful but with these five New Year’s Eve party must-haves you can be sure that your 2014 will start with a bang.
1. Decorations

You’ll no doubt still have your Christmas decs up when the new year comes knocking but adding a few extra touches will really brighten the place up.
Some “2014” table confetti and balloons is a fab place to start when adding a bit of sparkle. 

2. A signature cocktail

Photo Credit: Wellenbad

Cocktails are experiencing a bit of a renaissance at the moment and a New Year mix is a must. 

You don’t have to get too creative; there are lots of tasty and unique recipes online. Why not try mulled mojitos or a chocolate and raspberry martini?


3. Good food

If you’ve got fabulous drinks then you need some spectacular snacks to pair with them.

Have a hamper filled with luxury treats delivered straight to your door and cut out the hassle of shopping while ensuring that you receive the highest quality produce.

4. Fireworks

Photo Credit: Edgar Olivera

If you’ve got a big garden and a competent adult then fireworks at midnight are a must-have.
There’s something completely magical about a fireworks display and with so many wonderful variety boxes for sale you can tailor your display accordingly.


5. Champagne

No party is truly complete without bubbly and a New Year with no champagne is absolutely unthinkable.
If you’re hosting a party make sure you have enough for re-fills and if you’re attending one why not have the host’s name printed on the label to commemorate the date.

You can find all the food and drink you need on our luxury hampers page.

Employer's guide to the Christmas party

by Mhairi MacLeod 16. December 2013 21:04

Your staff are preparing to have a festive bash and you can get excited too, but only after you’ve ensured that plans are in place to make sure everyone enjoys themselves!
Have a read of our employers guide to the Christmas party before the festivities begin:
Conduct a quick survey

Etiquette expert Thomas Farley says “if every year you are having half the staff not showing up to your office party, you are doing something wrong.”
Try conducting a LinkedIn poll to see what your staff would like to do. Their answers may surprise you.

Health and safety

Consider health and safety as a priority; makes the point that “assessment of the risk before the event is crucial: both to reduce the risk of accidents or injuries and to help defend a claim should the worst happen.”
Consider limiting the availability of alcohol and perhaps forgoing booze yourself to keep an eye on everything.

Remember professional conduct

Susan Adams from says the Christmas party is “not the place for personal confession, expressions of frustration or speechifying about what you’d do with the company if you were in charge.”
Remind your staff that they are in a professional environment and should bear that in mind.

Dress code

The Forbes Style File has an interesting take on what to wear to the Christmas party; they suggest that we “keep in mind that a certain kind of office dress code still remains… do not wear deep cleavages, sheer blouses and dresses and skirts that are too short or too tight.”

Consider detailing the dress code in an office wide memo so that everyone knows what is expected.

Don’t talk shop

Zoe Mintz from the International Business Times says “try and limit how much you speak about work.”
Ask your staff about their families and their plans for the festive season; really listen to what they have to say and you could find that the party is great for your reputation too.


If you're searching for the perfect gift for your staff then visit our staff incentives and rewards page.

What staff really want this Christmas

by Mhairi MacLeod 6. December 2013 01:37

A recent survey by job site Glassdoor found that 73% of respondents wanted a cash bonus from their employers at Christmas time.
If bonuses aren’t realistic for your company or you’re just not on board with cash Christmas presents then you can still give your staff gifts that will help ease the financial burden of Christmas.
Here are our five favourites:
1. A food hamper

A hamper is an exciting gift to open and one that is truly practical too.
Give your staff a hamper filled with a couple of bottles of wine and some classic Christmas staples and it will save them some money on nibbles and drinks for festive guests.


2. Vouchers

Photo Credit: Noricum

As opposed to gifting your staff vouchers for a coffee shop or the cinema why not give them vouchers to redeem on the high street?

If they need to they can spend them on their Christmas shopping and save some much needed cash.


3. A lottery ticket

Photo Credit: Aleszwe

We’re not saying that your employees will definitely win millions but the thought of it will make for a memorable Christmas present.

Plus there’s always the chance that you’ll make someone’s Christmas if they hit the jackpot!


4. A day off

An extra day to see family and friends is really valuable at Christmas time!

It might even save you money in the long run if your business is winding down for Christmas and you don’t need to pay for heating and electricity for a day.


5. A thank you

Photo Credit: Lisacreativeniche

No matter what you give your staff this Christmas it has to go alongside a great big thank you from you to your employees.
A feature on suggests that a handwritten note can be just as effective as a big bonus when it comes to making your staff feel appreciated so make the effort and you’ll soon reap the rewards.


For great food hampers for staff visit our Corporate hampers and Christmas Gifts page.

Join Our Affiliate Future Programme and Earn up to 15% Commission on Hamper Sales

by Stewart 29. November 2013 12:03

Do you have advertising space on your website? Are you looking for an extra source of revenue? If so Highland Fayre wants to hear from you as we are looking for companies to join our affiliate marketing programmes! 

Companies who direct sales through to our websites will be paid a generous commission based on the value of the sales they accumulate each month.

What is Affiliate Marketing?

Using Affiliate Future, website publishers (i.e. affiliates) place adverts, banners or other links on their website. The advertiser (i.e. Highland Fayre) then pay the affiliate commission when a person on the affiliate’s site clicks on the banner, goes through to our website and makes a sale. 

To find out more about affiliate marketing and Affiliate Future click here.

How much commission do I get?

We will pay you:

- 10% commission up to £1,000 sales per month

- 12% commission up to £1,000-£1,500 sales per month

- 15% commission up to £1,500+ sales per month

For top earning affiliates there is also the opportunity to increase this commission depending on the number of sales you generate on a monthly basis.


Photo Credit: CJ Isherwood

How do I join your affiliate programme?

It is simple and completely FREE to join our affiliate programme.

Once you have registered with Affiliate Future, you can join our Highland Fayre programme by clicking here or our Affiliate programme by clicking here.

The sooner you join, the quicker you can start earning money.

Contact Us

If you have any questions about Highland Fayre’s affiliate marketing or any other affiliate marketing opportunities that yourself and Highland Fayre can work together on, then please contact Stewart Donaldson by emailing . Alternatively, call us on 01738 639 222.

We look forward to partnering with you.

GBEA - Highland Fayre Take Home The Special Merit Award

by David 23. November 2013 16:02

So it was the big night for the Great British Entrepreneur Awards (GBEA) Ceremony last Tuesday and what a fantastic event it was. With a smooth journey down to London, 30 minutes to spare for my wife Pia to get in some retail therapy, and even a cheeky wee room upgrade in our hotel, the omens certainly looked in Highland Fayre’s favour (maybe not so much when the credit card bill comes in from Pia’s shopping trip). 

(Sir Steve Redgrave and I after receiving the Special Merit Award at the Great British Entrepreneur Awards)

For its first year, the awards were a splendid affair with no expense spared. Held at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London, the atmosphere was so vibrant and it was an honour to be rubbing shoulders with some high profile entrepreneurs (i.e. James Caan was also up for two awards on the night).

I think one of the biggest highlights for me had to be the speech from Sir Steve Redgrave as he drew on the parallels between the traits of being an entrepreneur and that of a sportsman.  Such things as there being “no substitute for hard work”, “when you don’t succeed try again” and “drawing strength from others when working as part of a team” really hit home as I reflected on the trials and tribulations I have experienced as an entrepreneur.

(Pia and I at The Great British Entrepreneur Awards)

Facing some stiff competition, and despite not winning our category, I was delighted to have been singled out for the Special Merit Award

Simon Burton (Founder, The Great British Entrepreneur Awards) explained to me the essence of this award later on in the night: 

“The Special Merit Awards are given by the judges to the entrepreneurs who made them smile, applaud, gasp and cheer. These are the entrepreneurs with a great story to tell. They are the entrepreneurs who in some way capture the essence of what it means to be an entrepreneur.” 

(Fellow Award Winners)

(A view from the balcony at The Grand Connaught Rooms in London)

This award has certainly increased our determination to grow the business at home and abroad, and I envision big things for Highland Fayre when it comes to expanding into markets overseas in the future.

Birthday presents under £60

by Mhairi MacLeod 20. November 2013 19:22

If you’re looking for an extra special birthday gift this month then we have some seriously good ideas for you!
Here are our five favourite hampers for under £60:
1. A Taste of the North - £36.51

With a bottle of Señora Rosa Merlot, Walkers of Aberlour Luxury Dundee Slab Cake and a box of Duncan's of Deeside Family Recipe Scottish Shortbread amongst others this is a seriously Scottish hamper that will delight any birthday boy or girl.

Send this to a friend south of the border to give them a Scottish treat.

2. Chilli Lovers Choice Hamper - £40.93
Any fan of spice will thank you for this wonderful chilli and cheese hamper!
Perthshire Chilli Oatcakes and Snowdonia Cheese Company Red Devil Select Red Leicester with Chilli and Crushed Pepper will make a beautiful combination and a bottle of Ass Kisser Shiraz is ideal to wash down all that spice.

3. Luxury Larder - £51.67
This is the perfect hamper to fill up someone’s kitchen with high-end essentials.
Mackays preserves, Rendles Ginger Loaf Cake and Epicure Petit Pois & Whole Baby Carrots are just some of the wonderful goodies packed into a lovely red box for extra special presentation.

4. Luxury Red Wine & Cheese Hamper - £52.26
If you’ve got a traditionalist to buy for then why not go for a wine and cheese hamper?

A bottle of Dom Ramos Rioja and Cropwell Bishop Stilton Cheese Wedge are a wine and cheese lover’s dream while the addition of Epicure Wild Boar Pâté provides a unique twist.

5. The Lochnagar Personalised Hamper - £57.06
If you’d like to add an extra bit of sparkle to your present then a personalised hamper is the perfect idea.
A bottle of Las Condes Cabernet Sauvignon with a personalised label will send a special message to the recipient and Highland Croft Famous Macaroons and Mrs Bridges Spicy Tomato Salsa will give them something tasty to snack on.

For more hampers under £60 come and see our Hampers by Price page.

Christmas gifts for coeliacs

by Mhairi MacLeod 8. November 2013 22:15

If you have a friend or family member that is a coeliac then we’ve got some excellent news; gluten free produce is getting better and better and there are some fantastic presents to be found on the market.
A gluten free Christmas is no longer a chore!
Here are our 5 favourite Christmas gifts for coeliacs:
1.Chocolates & fizz

If there’s one thing that is guaranteed to make someone feel special it’s receiving a bottle of bubbly and a box of chocolates!
A lot of chocolates are gluten free which is helpful but you can buy specially made chocs that are equally as luxurious as non-GF options.


Photo Credit: Whatshername

All real cheese is gluten free which is a massive relief for those Stilton loving coeliacs out there.
The challenge will be finding perfect pairings for your gluten free friend; crackers, pickles and wines are all easily available online though.
If the recipient is a big cheese lover then they will be blown away by this gift.


3. A gluten free hamper
If you want to give a full compliment of gluten free gifts then a hamper full of GF produce is the perfect idea.
Ordering one as opposed to building it yourself saves time on searching for individual products and guarantees that you won’t accidentally include a non-GF item.

4. A fruit basket

Photo Credit: Michael Law

Fruit is most definitely gluten free and a well-presented basket full of unusual fruit can be a showstopper.
If you think your recipient will love it then you could even arrange a fruit basket to be delivered to their door each month of the year.


Distilled alcohol is gluten free so a dram or two won’t go a miss this Christmas!
A bottle of whisky is an ideal present during the festive season and, if you’re feeling extra giving, you can have the bottle personalised with the recipient’s name and a message from yourself.

For more Christmas gifts for coeliacs pop over to our speciality diet hampers page.