Get into the festive spirit with France’s finest wine-based apertif

Whether you’re drinking to the gentle warmth of the fireplace, or raising a glass with friends and family around Christmas dinner, there’s no Christmas drink quite like Lillet. The masterful balance of rich fruit infusions and superior Bordeaux wines makes Lillet the perfect choice for homemade cocktails when the temperatures start to drop and hearts begin to warm.

Every last drop of Lillet is imbued with the free-spirited elegance and classic charm for which the French have become famous. And thanks to Sainsbury’s, you can now enjoy this French fancy at home. So whether you’re wining-and-dining your nearest and dearest, or looking for that last minute gift for your gracious hosts, Lillet is on hand to help you celebrate this Christmas à la française. 

To help you really ease into the spirit of things, we offer up a few different aperitif recipes to help your festive frolics truly sing. Bold, refined and full of festive cheer, these Lillet serves promise to wow friends and family all winter long with their Bordelaise sophistication. 

So let those aperitif moments drift into the festive months ahead with the serving suggestions below. 


Lillet’s deliciously elegant wine-based aperitifs can be purchased at your local Sainsbury’s. Get yours in time for Christmas to treat your guests with a truly tasty and festive moment.

Lillet’s Festive Aperitifs


Star of Lillet
50ml Lillet Blanc 

2.5ml Maple Syrup

One dash of Abotts bitters


Build in a flute, top with champagne


Star anise 


Lillet Xmas Berry
50ml Lillet Rosé

75ml tonic water 


Build in a wine glass, with cubed ice




Lillet Sparkle
35ml Lillet Rosé

15ml blood orange purée

One dash of Angostura bitters


Build in a flute, top with Champagne




Lillet Red Blush
35ml Lillet Blanc 

25ml Martell VS

25ml fresh lemon juice

25ml sugar syrup


Build in a mug, top with hot roiboos teas 


Lemon wedge and cloves


Lillet Winter Spritz
50ml Lillet Blanc 

75ml Tonic Water 


Build in a wine glass, with cubed ice 


Cinnamon stick & orange wheel

Recipe: Tonka Bean Rice Pudding with Poached Lillet Blanc Pears

Because the true artistry of Lillet is as at home in the kitchen as it is in the cocktail

Lillet Poached Pears

6 conference pears- peeled, stem on. 

1l Lillet Blanc

2l water

4 cardomom pods 

1 star anise 

1 clove 

3tbsp ground turmeric 

200g light brown sugar


Tonka Bean Rice Pudding

250g pudding rice

200g condensed milk 

250ml evaporated milk 

500ml double cream 

1l milk 

5 Tonka beans 

170g caster sugar 

Teaspoon salt



Lillet Poached Pears

Add all the Lillet poached pear ingredients to a large deep pan and put onto a
medium heat. 

Ensure the pears are fully submerged while cooking, make yourself a cartouche to fit the pan to help with this. 

Cook on a medium low heat for around 40 minutes or until a skewer will pass through the pear with little pressure. You don’t want them too soft as they will become too hard to handle and lose the texture required. 

Cool and store in the cooking liquor until required.

Tonka Bean Rice Pudding

To start you will need to grate your Tonka beans into a small dish and set aside.
Use the smallest grater possible.

Weigh all ingredients out and place in a heavy bottom pot. Cast iron with a ceramic
surface would be best. If you don’t have one you could always use a slow cooker set
on medium. 

Place the pan on a medium low heat, we don’t want the pan to boil just to simmer.
Keep stirring the pan. If the rice starts to stick turn down the heat. 

Simmer for around 45 minutes, until the rice is soft. 

Serve immediately with the Lillet soaked poached pear.