Archive for the ‘Food and Drink’ Category

Whilst we were in Australia we caame across slush cocktail mixes, basically just add the necessary spirit to a cordial and freeze, ready for a cooling drink around the pool later on (Slush Puppie for adults 🙂 )

I remember about 10 years ago Tesco sold something similar (but with the alcohol already mixed)

Anyway the good old Internet has tracked down something similar on…

Ice Republic Cocktails, sourced from New Zealand. Instead of a cordial the mix comes in a dehydrated form, but add a litre of warm water and half a bottle of the required spirit, replace the screw cap and shake you have 1.6 litres of the cocktail ready to freeze (8 Hours).

Having made up my first batch (the Pina Colada tastes great) it’s worth bearing in mind that whilst the instructions say to let it defrost for a few minutes before serving it’s going to take 20-30 minutes at UK room temperature before this stuff is pourable from the bag.

For personal consumption I suggest pouring it into ice-cream tubs so you can scoop it out as and when you need it.

As before, perfect for those summer parties and barbeques, and if you’re going camping or on a picnic these make the perfect cooler block and drink combination 😀


James Squire Original Amber AleSuprisingly in a colony of  lager drinkers, the Malt Shovel Brewery have come up with a range of decent ales under the James Squire brand.

The first I tried, the Golden Ale, immediately reminded me of Wychwood’s Circle Master (although obviously it’s hard to make a direct comparison not having the English ales here with me). The Amber Ale comes in somewhere between Goliath and Fiddler’s Elbow and the Porter can see Hobgoblin somewhere in the distance.

Convicted of Highway Robbery and sentenced to transportation in 1785, James Squire was later caught stealing ingredients for brewing beer, the brew was that good that he was given a lenient sentence of a five pound fine and three hundred lashes.

By 1806, having completed his sentence and settled in Australia, he had established an estate of 1000 acres, and succesfully farmed the first Australia hops (and was given a cow by way of reward).

It was at this time that he built the Maltings Shovel Tavern half-way between Sydney Town and Paramatta serving the busy trading route along the Paramatta River.

Historian, Philip Greaves, wrote at the time: “Sailors of many nations who were vague about the locations of Nineveh or Babylon could find their way to Squire’s in a thick fog.”

From his criminal beginnings James Squire ended his life as a District Constable, banker and philanthropist.