Well this week I brewed an entirely new beer created by my two bosses for the Withnail & I range. I won't tell you the name of it incase it's supposed to be a trade secret. Jason thought a few days after it had been in the fermenting vessel this dark beer needed more hops (he likes his beer hoppy!), anyway he had one in mind and asked me to choose. I sniffed the three that were already in the beer and I picked the one the boss didn't want! He asked me why, response "Cause it smells better than the other two" After a discussion about what the hops bring to it I replied with "Apricot and Peach goes better with Chocolate than pine" I mean who has ever had Pine Chocolate? He wanted Chinock which has pine as one of the characteristics! In went two stocking balaclavas of El Dorado. No pressure there then, it did taste nice though 3 days after they went in.
NB:-This beer went on to be known as The Embalmer. This range is no longer available. Edited 2021
Last week I told you I was trying something different at the weekend. Well it's not beer, it's Kin Vodka. On occasions through the food festival season here in Cumbria our stand (Eden Brewery Ltd) has always been situated near to Kin Vodka. Judith always has plenty around her promo stand repeating the mantra 'ooo, aaahh, yum'. So one cold early morning in Cockermouth Judith poured me a tipple of the Toffee Vodka. It is without a doubt sweet and very nice. I couldn't drink more than a double shot on it's own because it is sweet, but I tell you that morning she also poured it into my coffee! Boy did that drink go down well, I had rosy checks the rest of the morning. Kin Vodka is always sold out by 4 0'clock no matter how much she brings. But last weekend I didn't have a shot, I wanted to make one of her cocktails and realised I'd actually give the recipe sheet to my sister in law, so I whizzed up a banana milkshake with some decent hot chocolate powder in it and poured in a good glug of Toffee Vodka. Very yummy. So if you get chance hunt Judith out at a food festival (if you can't find her ask me, I'll have hunted her down before you). If you like the sound of it and want a bottle now visit her website
Decided to go far a walk last Sunday down by the Marsh area that acts as an over flow for the local river. It' been turned in to a nature reserve and is a nice place for a quick walk. Along this walk I look out for the Longhorn Cows which graze in the area where the ducks swim along. Sometimes they are moved to a different field. Me and My Man were looking looking out for wildlife with general wildlife chitchat. Anyway My Man points out a couple of crows and starts to tell me some Crow info. So I'm all ears and taking it all in. This is what he told me...
“ There was Research done awhile ago by the RSPB for the Highways Agency as they found a total of 200 dead crows just a little further up the road”. The road being the M6 He continued that there was concern that they may have died from Avian Flu. “The RSPB Pathologist examined the remains of all the crows, and, to everyone's relief, confirmed the problem was definitely NOT Avian Flu. The cause of death appeared to be vehicular impacts. But, during the detailed analysis it was noted that varying colours of paints appeared on the bird's beaks and claws. So they analysing the paint residues it was determined that 98% of the crows had been killed by impact with trucks, while only 2% were killed by an impact with a car.” Wow I said it's amazing what they can do with technology these days, didn't realise they had every vehicle paint in the database. So had someone dumped paint on the land or something? That's really bad!”
“Well” My Man continued “The RSPB then hired an Bird Behaviourist to determine if there was a cause for the percentages of truck kills versus car kills. The Behaviourist very quickly concluded the cause: when crows eat road kill, they always have a look-out crow in a nearby tree to warn of impending danger.
The scientific conclusion was that while all the lookout crows could say "Cah, Cah", none could say "Lorry"
He had a straight face all the way through this and sucked me in further and further. Even on the punchline I was still believing it until the satellite delay kicked in and I cried with laughter. And even to this day I am still laughing. There is noway on this earth even under duress will I ever be able to repeat this without starting the whole conversation off with a big cheesy grin.