Tuesday, 9 December 2014: Australian Christmas tables, picnics and BBQs are set to get a little bit fancy this year, with Dan Murphy’s predicting a rise in craft beer, premium spirits and sparkling over the holiday period.

According to Dan Murphy’s Head of Merchandise, Campbell Stott: “This year we’re expecting people to not only buy a great bottle of wine for Christmas lunch but also to give generously. Japanese whisky and premium Australian gin are expected to be under more trees this Christmas than ever before.”

Top picks for this year’s Christmas celebrations are:

·       Champagne will again be a Christmas favourite with an expected 275 per cent increase in sales at Dan Murphy’s. The most popular Champagnes are tipped to be Moet & Chandon Imperial Brut NV, Veuve Clicquot, Yellow Label Brut and Mumm Cordon Rouge NV. If you’re looking for a special bottle at a great price, try the highly awarded Lanson Gold Vintage.

·       Mr Stott says it would also be worthwhile grabbing at least one bottle of top quality local sparkling: "The best local sparkling wine to launch in years has been the A by Arras Premium Cuvee NV. It’s Tasmanian class at a great price. We also love the Brown Brothers Sparkling NV and Chandon Vintage.”

·       Beer sales growth is expected to be mainly in the premium and craft aisles of Dan Murphy’s. Craft brands from around the country worth seeking out include Mountain Goat, Four Pines and McLaren Vale Ale. Premium Australian beer will increase 136 per cent this Christmas with craft beer also set to enjoy higher popularity with an expected rise of 118 per cent.

·       Premium single malt whisky is anticipated to increase by nearly 300 per cent, according to Dan Murphy’s whisky expert , Hamish Fyfe,: “Single malt is the pinnacle of whisky making. Its popularity has grown considerably this year and we expect this to show during the holiday period.”

·       Traditionally, Chivas Regal is the biggest selling whisky at Christmas. – It is expected that 30,000 bottles of 12 year old Chivas Regal will be sold in the week before Christmas alone.

·       Gin is shaping up as the drink of summer and Australian gin is being recognised on the global stage. Sales are set to rise by 110 per cent this holiday period at Dan Murphy’s.. Schweppes tonic isn’t the only mixer option, although it’s a good one, with craft mixers from Capi, Fever Tree and Cascade making a standard mixed drink more unique.

·       Dan Murphy’s food and drink matching recommendations are: Yamazaki Distillers Reserve Japanese Whisky to accompany a smoky Christmas ham and a classic De Bortoli Noble One wine with a hint of orange to match Christmas pudding.

“Christmas in Australia is a great time to treat your loved ones, and maybe even discover something new. We have the right gift for every budget,” says Mr Stott.

For more information, images or to speak to a Dan Murphy’s expert, please contact:

Isabelle Clements | | 02 9667 4211 | 0432 051 443

Frankie Gallucci | | 02 9667 4211 |0400 155 958