Africa, America, Countries, Culture, Europe, Food & Wine, Ireland, UK, Wine

Hungry and Thursday – the off-sales

It’s what I use my one walk a day for… to go to the offie,

No. that’s not a misprint… I’ve been isolating from the office for nigh on a year since branching out on my own.

You may know it in your country as the liquor store or the wine store.

I was relieved then to hear that the offie ranks along the chemist and the supermarket as one of the stores that can stay open during the Coronavirus crisis.

Ned in Glasgow and NZ

Now we each do things a little bit differently and, at its rawest, the Glasgow offie is a cultural touchpoint in itself.

Now unsurprisingly I never saw a bottle of this New Zealand Cabernet Sauvignon, The Ned, in my offie when I was growing up.

It has gooseberry tastings don’t you know.

The drink du jour of The Glasgow Ned (the Non-Educated Delinquent) was, and still is, I dare say, Buckfast tonic wine.

Buckie is best drunk from out of the bottle and wrapped in brown paper while sitting on a park bench.

Not perhaps what the monks in the West Country of England had invented it for I should imagine.

The sight of a Ned. or Dublin gurrier, or whatever you call them in your country, swigging booze on a park bench might not be what you’d want to see…

When you’re pushing a pram.

Boston, full of beans

And I was reminded of how the good folk of Boston deal with that dilemma when I was watching the movie Ted 2 the other night.

Mark Wahlberg was drinking his can, which was wrapped in brown paper, with his Teddy bear on Boston Common.

And it took me back to the English guy who had attached himself to our group, Nick, on our post-University summer in Boston.

And didn’t know about the rule about drinking in public and the need to cover it in wrapping which he had some trouble in explaining to the cops.

‘OK to throw tea into the harbour and blame it on the Indians but God help you if you drink a can of beer without the brown paper covering it!’ Officer.

That Boston summer remains a glowing memory and Beantown came back on the radar yesterday when I was invited out for August, COVID-19 allowing.

With a tour of Fenway Park included and the chance to sit on the Boston Red Sox Green Wall. See https://www.boston.gov/visiting-boston and https://www.discovernewengland.org.

South African township

Of course while I say that every country’s off-sales is different my eyes were opened by the familiar grill bars at the South African shebeen.

In the Port Elizabeth New Brighton township in South Africa where we stopped off for a braai Day in the life of a township and https://www.southafrica.net/uk/en/.

And a braai is a barbecue and a shebeen what started out as an illegal Irish drinking den.

More high-brow perhaps is the Tenerife wine shop https://www.visitingtenerife.com on our walking trip with CanariaWays www.CanariaWays.com where we ordered Shakespeare wine…. A walk through the ages… Tenerife

Is that a Malmsey I see before me?

That’s the court wine Malmsey, or Malvasia, which the Bard references in his plays and is still sold there.

Me, I’ve finished off my Ned wine and have resorted to draining the schnapps miniatures in my globe drinks trolley.

From the schnapps shop in Ehrwald in Austria https://www.tyrol.com.

So whether it’s Prost, Failte, Salute, Na zdravi or just Cheers I’m looking you right in the eye and toasting our holiday providers… #DontCancelPostpone.

Deals, Europe, Food, Food & Wine, Ireland, Wine

Guten Morgan Valentine

Home is where the heart is which is why we spend Valentine’s Day here in Ireland.

Although I reckon Herself hankers after Venice, Rome, Paris, New York.

Drink up

I was back there today to follow up with post-Holiday World contacts… OK another excuse for morning Mimosas.

And to enjoy the Morgan hospitality… and, yes, I was sorely tempted to have one of their cocktails.

Don’t tell anyone but myself, The Scary One and Daddy’s Little Girl have all been back at various points.

Oh, I’ll have all three

The Morgan comes in at €162 for Valentine’s night. Check out https://mbe.bookassist.com/SelectDates?_ga=2.213394582.368839267.1580126964-851352647.1580126964&arrival=15&av_price=false&bp=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.themorgan.com%2Fen%2Freservations%2F%3Fprice_group%3D8%26kd%3Dy&ch=0&date_in=2020-01-27&date_out=2020-01-28&guide_id=1&hotel_group_id=0&hotel_id=271&nn=1&payment=All_charges_to_company&paymentOption=Guest_pays_hotel_directly&price_group=8&rp_vg_row=false&service_model=5&user_currency=EUR&user_language=en#/.

Temple Bar doesn’t have to be the Hen and Stag hub that it’s often portrayed as, although it is great craic too.

Laurie and a couple of Jims

You can though branch off and find cheaper drinks both across the Liffey and a couple of great pubs off Grafton Street…

Mary’s Bar & Hardware https://marysbar.ie/?utm_source=maps&utm_campaign=gmb on Wicklow Street (you’ll see why) which is tied in with WowBurger.

Mary’s Bar, Wicklow Street, Dublin

And also O’Donoghue’s Bar where folk gods The Dubliners were formed https://www.odonoghues.ie on Merrion Row.

But, of course, it is well worth keeping you in house at 10 Fleet Street Restaurant & Bar.

We did and I’ll dig out my thoughts and share them with you.

Canada, Countries, Culture, Europe, Food & Wine, Wine

Meghan’s choice: London v Toronto

Eh? As they like to say at the end of every sentence in Toronto.

But it’s not the no-brainer you might think for Meghan and Harry.

Here’s a quick-fire comparison between Ye Olde England’s jewel and Canada’s pride and joy.

One day, I’ll be a princess

Toronto A

Restaurants

London: So we dug out her Instagram for this one and Meg-watchers will recognise Bocca di Lupo www.boccadilupo.com for the Italianophile actress.

Bijou; Toronto

 

Where to live

London: Frogmore Cottage in Windsor isn’t your old-style two-bedroom English country cottage. Obvs.

But it, and its royal household, is the property of the Sussexes. And they can always stay in Buckingham Palace when they’re in London.

Toronto: Outlook magazine http://www.outlookmagazine.ca/finance/8-richest-neighbourhoods-in-toronto/ recommends the old traditional neighbourhood of York Mills with starting prices of C$3.5m.

Well, Harry and Meghan have said they’ll work for their suppers… anyone for a new series of Suits?

And for more on London and Toronto visit www.visitlondon.com and www.seetorontonow.com.

And Harry and Meghan know what I think of both cities… Carole King… you’re Beautiful and Flyday Friday – Canada, eh?.