Thursday 28 May 2020

Mrs. Miniver

So as we all slowly lose our minds in lockdown or whatever it is we’re currently in, I turn to drink for solace. And when that fails, I turn to liquids of any kind. My top six this week?

- Penguin Sands Chardonnay, £3.85 from Sainsbury’s. An Argentinian white at a fantastically affordable price. PK didn’t much like their Shiraz, typically short-sighted of him, but the Chardonnay works just fine if you put it in the freezer an hour beforehand. Only snag, Penguins and sand? Apparently they do walk around a beach in South Africa, but normally you’d say, rocks, ice, pack snow, that kind of thing. Sand is just wrong. But what do I know? Great with shellfish and soft cheeses.

- Mr. Muscle Sink Unblocker, £3.95 from Tesco. Never drunk sink unblocker before? Try this from Mr. D. Trump of D.C.: I’m taking it, it’s been tested by the best doctors in the world, many people have taken it, people in the medical profession all over the world, it’s a highly effective way of preventing the Coronavirus. I don’t need a mask. I’ve inhaled some Mr. Muscle, enough to count, can we just leave it at that? Ideal with venison and red meats.

- All discount whiskies. Leave it to Tesco or Sainsbury’s to knock a few quid off a litre of whatever it might be, and move in: Famous Grouse, Bell’s, Whyte & Mackay, something’s going to be on offer this week and that’s the one you want. At present we’re getting through about half a litre of Grouse a day and neither of us has yet shown symptoms of the virus. Some alcohol poisoning, I won’t lie, but worth it for that moment when the time comes for a sundowner and we can blot out the ongoing situation. Owing to a geographical quirk, sundown where we live is around 4.00 pm. Great with linguine, Genoa cake and kippers.

- London tapwater - probably going to be rationed if the heatwave goes on, so get it while you can. Massively chlorinated, which means it’s like drinking the contents of the Putney Swimming Baths, but so good for you. I sometimes pour a glass of tapwater and merely inhale the bouquet with all its memories and associations, all its bounty. Then I pour it away. That’s just how I roll. Also, you can use it to wash the car, boil potatoes and ward off pandemic infections. Tea made with London tapwater is like no other tea. Instant coffee takes on a new savour. Great with sliced bread, game, toothpaste.

- B & Q Brush Cleaner, in the big bottle, £9.97 for two litres. This stuff a) cleans paint brushes and b) is an appealing sapphire colour. You want to put it in a cocktail, soon as look at it. And the smell! Is there any experience better than cleaning your paintbrush after a long lockdown half-morning’s painting the bathroom, standing there, inhaling the crisp aroma of brush cleaner? You feel like a king, a king who’s successfully painted a couple of doors. Plus this, from D.T. of D.C.: There are lots of things, brush cleaner, it’s a thing with a lot of uses, of lot of great uses, many people in the scientific community are using it. It’s a beautiful blue colour, it works for Covid-19, I don’t have to say it but it’s well known. Also great with curries, hard cheeses, game.

- Dominic Cummings’ four star petroleum promise! Yes, you can get petrol for £1 a litre or less if you hunt around. Remember the days of filling up the car and sucking in those petrol fumes while you stood there in a freezing draught, nozzle in hand? Remember the sense of promise those fumes held, the promise of journeys to come, of new landscapes to explore? Remember that tingle of anticipation? Well, petrol’s back! It’s time to gas up the tank and go for a drive! With petrol! Or diesel! It’s time to shake off the musty integuments of lockdown and make a nuisance of yourself somewhere miles away! Great with vegan burgers, Tesco Puff Snacks, Twixes, egg sandwiches.

Next week: cooking with Vitalis Hair Tonic and other amazing lockdown tips.


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