Archive for Drinks

The Dog Days of Summer

Let’s get this out, before we go any further, I am a frost worshipper. A clear blue sky and crisp clean air with a rime to every leaf and blade of grass is the weather I like.  Now we have the blue sky, but it’s hot, hot, hot and I am torpid in the heat. Even the sparrows have been invading the cool vault of the café. Tim has become a bird whisperer, getting adept at enticing them out of open windows and doors.

The roads outside are quiet, the car park a smell of gravel, dust and baking cars. The only shade is by our outside tables or under the chestnut tree, which has become the premium parking space. In the by roads and lanes around the town, the wild roses and dog daisies are starring the verges, celebrating the dog days of the year, July and August the hottest months. The name comes from the dog star Sirius, which is the brightest star in the sky.It can been seen at the feet of the constellation of Orion the hunter, one of his hunting dogs. “Dog” is also a Latin tag for wild, feral.

Lunch time and salads and piquant prawns are the orders of the day; crisp lettuce, sweet tomatoes, beetroot, radishes. the bounty of summer. Ice cream has replaced custard as dessert accompaniment. The clink of ice against glass, a cloud of elderflower, sunshine orange.

Why not order a pic-nic sandwich and fruit or cake from us and take it to eat beside the river or up in the cool trees of the forest?

Outside the houses opposite shimmer in the furnace of the sun. Inside, I bless the high ceilings, cool white walls, and gently stirring curtains. If you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen they say.

 

 

Make a Brew

I love a cup of tea, it’s how I start my day and the beverage I chose after our evening meal. We use a good quality tea from the West Country which makes a pleasant tasting cup. But I also enjoy tisanes, a word we borrowed from the French, which applies to any drink made with herbs, flowers and spices, they are refreshing and make a nice change from the caffeine infused drinks.

Some teas can aid the digestion, both mint and chamomile tea are good after a meal. Sage and ginger supress colic. The medicinal qualities of different teas are endless, and many people use them as a gentle remedy, but that’s another blog!

For me, the real pleasure comes in the look, smell and taste of the drink. I used to enjoy blending teas, the aroma of Rosehip, Anise, Raspberry, Nettle and Liquorice with a waft of spices clove and cardamom was one of my favourites. It’s called Herbal Harmony and is a real feel good drink. The colours make it look particularly appealing.

Rose tea helps calm you down. It’s aroma is that of a summer garden, with just a hint of sherbet. You can mix dried rose petals with a black loose leaf tea for “Rose ” tea. You can buy loose wild rosebuds which make a pink beverage and has no caffeine.

Some herbal and fruit tisanes are lovely chilled too. Hibiscus, a tea that is popular in the middle east, has a deep red velvety colour. Over ice with a twist of lemon its a great summer drink. Keep some in the fridge for mixers or straight drinks.

At Pea Green we sell fruit and herbal teas as well as the quality tea from Miles. With the roses scenting the air, and the herbs thriving in the heat, ready to  be picked and used. Enjoy a summer tea with us the next time you’re in.

Most Excellent Berry!

 

Coffee has been a beverage that we have enjoyed in this country since the 17th century, when the first coffee houses were opened in London. They were places where the literate and upper classes met to debate matters of the day and partake of this new, revitalizing drink.

Making a good cup of coffee starts with a quality bean or a blend of beans which is what we use. Our coffee is a Supreme Crème which is smooth and creamy with notes of milk chocolate and hazelnuts; a prolonged earthy finish, balanced by soft vanilla and caramel notes. But the blend of this coffee, according to our suppliers, is a well-guarded secret!

 

Then we take care that the right amount of ground coffee is used to give the right strength to the drink we are making, a cappuccino being different from an Americano Our filter coffee, from the same blend is freshly made as required. We make sure that the milk is hot and frothy, but not scalded. It is then topped off with our unique chocolate powder. A classic way to present it.

We have been making coffee for the public since 1987, and although coffee machines have been updated in this time, the principle remains the same.

I think it also enhances the experience to drink it from a good china cup or mug. I am not a fan of the big cups on off set saucers which seem so popular now. They seem clumsy to me and difficult to hold.

Quote from a 17th pamphlet entitled A Character of coffee and of Coffee Houses, written by an MP.

“T’is extolled for drying up the Crudities of the Stomach, and for expelling Fumes out of the Head. Excellent Berry! which can cleanse the English-man’s Stomak of Flegm, and expel Giddinesse out of his Head.”

Well, even MP’s have to be right some of the time!