It’s raining gin; exploring demijohn, the liquid deli

I don’t think I felt a more at home then when in the liquid deli DemiJohn. I mean it’s got everything; from sumptuously fruity elderflower vinegar, to dangerously moorish Seville orange gin. Somewhere round about in the middle they round the whole thing off with so-smooth-it-could-be-fruit-juice olive oil and balsamic vinegar so flavoursome, sweet, intense that it costs £500/l, and trying a spoonful I can see why. Put it this way, you would not drizzle this over your bog standard toasted veg, this deserves, Parma ham, chunks of crumbling Parmesan, slow sun dried tomatoes (the posh kind) or perfectly ripe plump red strawberries. All this in a quirky shop in Oxford’s self styled independent hub on the border of town and the more edgy Jericho; Little Clarendon Street. You would be forgiven for assuming this is a one off, struggling business, but no. You can also buy their remarkable rhubarb vodka in a few shops all over the country, York, Glasgow and Edinburgh as well as Oxford. But we’re not talking some corporate chain here. Ex-army captain Angus Ferguson ostensibly runs the show from rural Scotland but in reality he is very much the life and soul of the party, at the heart of every shop, happy to serve customers, incite his employees and nth use about his products which he is clearly passionate about. In fact ut was his idea to throw the Little Clarendon street party which I attended and demijohn was certainly the centre of the party, if it wasn’t for the abysmal British weather I fully expect students and tourists alike (normally bitter enemies) might even have come together dancing in the streets to the sounds of various musical acts discovered by Angus for the event, from Acapella to hard rock (minus the cafe). As I walked off down the street at the end of the day merrily holding a cocktail invented after a recent challenge to the nearby duke of Cambridge cocktail bar my mind was running with ideas to use the raspberry vinegar in a kale salad dressing or the marmalady gin in a cocktail, or even the gooseberry vinegar in a cocktail! One thing is for sure, demijohn is an inspiring place, maybe it was the intoxicatingly depth of the fruity flavours or just the enthusiasm of Angus and his team, I shall certainly be returning to stock up for my kitchen/ cocktail cupboard and I urge you to pop in and do the same, you won’t regret it. It’s worth noting you can buy online too! http://www.demijohn.co.uk

  

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The Posh Man’s Jagerbomb

The Posh Man’s Jagerbomb

My Dad has a new addiction, introduced to him by the man who lives upstairs.  His latest fix was obtained last night when he popped his head in to where I was working studiously at my desk (ok admittedly the Kitchen table and with How I met your Mother on in the background…) at 5 to 7 to declare that we were going out to dinner to Quod with the man who lives upstairs. (So that is how the parents avoid stepping foot in any actual supermarkets for food for the entire time I am away). Feeling that having eaten my calorie allowance for the week at a lavish New Years Eve dinner at the organist’s house, I opted for a light salmon salad. However my healthy intentions were scuppered when my father suggested dessert. His excuse was that it would ‘speed me on my way’ to drinks with friends and he was of course right, I’d much rather be able to order that in a club than a Jagerbomb, although I admit it would be harder to drink/eat while dancing…. It is rarely on the menu at a restaurant but waiters always seem incredibly pleased when you ask for it, it’s rather like being in an exclusive club, in the know. Recently my Dad has passed on this knowledge to me and I haven’t looked back. It’s a very simple, quick, easy and not heavy after a big meal, perfect dinner party fare. On top of all of this it carries the triple threat of a Jagerbomb: caffeine, alcohol and sugar, no wonder it hits the spot. This dessert is an Affogato. A single scoop of ice cream served with a shot of coffee and a shot of amaretto which is poured over for a lethally delicious hit. Zizzi’s served it with amaretti biscuits which worked very well crushed up on top and a shot of frangelico. In Quod they served it with langues de chat biscuits, in Pizza Express they served it in a teacup and at home I served it in a cocktail glass with crushed hazelnuts. I wonder if it would work with Ben and Jerry’s and mocha (the big kids version)