Fortnum & Masons showcased the smallest press preview of the bunch - but there were some eye-watering prices that would challenge even the most serious foodie.

Maybe the specially designed Swarovski crystal ankle band does add something to the flavour of the leg of its Ibericos Maldonado Albarragena ham, but it’s difficult to tell what. I’d hazard a guess it just jacks up the hefty £1,950 price tag from the ‘standard’ £1,150 ham. For both of these, the ham comes with its own carver (of course), someone who will come to your home “to carve the ham with the expertise that it deserves” - except on Christmas Day.

Alternatively, for a more traditional table, there’s the free-range, slow-grown heritage breed Bourbon Red Turkey (rep: £105/ 5.5kg to 7kg) supplied exclusively to Fortnums by its Oxfordshire supplier, and beef suet mince pies (rap: £15 for 6)

But bonkers prices aside, there are some nice products sitting in the new Frost Fayre range, a livery that has been launched to celebrate the store’s new partnership with the Somerset House ice-rink. The range include a trio of shimmering gold and silver jams, including a Buck’s Fizz marmalade with edible glitter (rsp: £3.45), strawberry starburst conserve, and cranberry savour with edible silver leaf. The range also includes a tin of spiced Christmas tea, mints, feast biscuits, white chocolate and cranberry florentines and an iced Christmas cake.

However, unlike the main retailers’ previews, there was no opportunity to taste any of the products - it was a case of look, but don’t touch.

Star: The Swarovski Ibericos Maldonado Albarragena ham for the last word in convenience.

Verdict: Austerity? What austerity! Some bling to keep oligarchs happy, but also a few gourmet treats accessible for the masses.