'Agree With Everything - Deny Nothing - Embellish All

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Sunday, December 30, 2007

Groucho, Thou Shouldst Be Living At This Hour

Cockermouth Main Street, a few days before Christmas. I enter an off-licence and buy a bottle of reliably good single malt ahead of my departure for the Deep North. The establishment's swanky new POS system blinks at me with an animated Santa and an important seasonal message: "(Well-known Scotch manufacturer) asks that you enjoy alcohol responsibly this Christmas". To which corporatist inanity I can only respond in the words of G Marx Esq - Thanks - but I've got other plans . . .

Les Delices De Cumbria - XXI

Blessed are the cheesemakers. Possibly the finest goat's cheese available to humanity can be found a mere 10-minute walk from my front door at Wardhall, where Lynn and Thomas Balantine Dykes manufacture the delicious Wardhall Blue, a truly pungent sharp and rich example. If you're inclined to aquire a sliver of this lactic heaven for yourself, drive down to Wardhall Guards and ascend the birdleway towards Tallentire Hill. You'll know you're heading in the right direction when strange, satanic sheep and double-horned and dark-browed goats populate the surrounding fields. The dairy itself is a cat-swingingly small room just off the farm-yard guarded by a golden retriever of fierce mien. The cheese it protects is heavenly delight. There are rumours of a soft Brie-like cow's cheese to come in 2008. Watch this space for further artisanal Arkleby cheese updates.

Amour - And A Man With A Dog

This blog has been uncharacteristically silent - largely because the sorts of things I was likely to post about are precisely the sorts of things I'm not inclined to record in this blog. The Renaissance Couple have decamped to South Africa for six months (where I'll shortly be joining them for a brief holiday). Some time before their departure I agreed to dogsit Ben The Trailhound. On hearing of this innovation in my domestic arrangements, V promptly combusted in a terminal lather. The upshot of which strange fashion of forsaking is that I have gained custody of a trailhound for the winter. So far, I'm pleased to say, the relationship has been one of mutual trust, respect, admiration and affection. It must be something to do with the cheese treats I feed him . . .