The Joker

Recently Tim Stafford leant me one of his boards, a 9’0 longboard with a bonzer tail and shovel nose, called ‘The Joker’ Having never ridden a bonzer I was interested to feel how the tail set up rode in the water. Generally with a longboard I prefer a single fin. Whenever I ride a 3 fin setup I find it …

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Lamb, olive and anchovy Ragu with a grenacha red

La Copa is a mellow, easy drinking red wine that I really enjoy with a sticky and meaty slow cooked lamb dish. This meal is full of flavour and loves the grenacha, a grape that really complements the heady smell of cooked lamb,or rich pasta dishes. I love the flavours that come off the bone on a long cooked meat …

Albarino and grilled sardines

Out on the western edge of the Celtic fringe of Europe is this small isolated country, a land of fjord like inlets called Rias, rolling hills and farms, empty beaches and rocky headlands along what is known as the coast of death. The land is beset by mild temperatures and wet rain, there is a pervasive mist that settles over …

Grilled Mackerel and Viognier

NOW that the summer is high, and the mackerel close to shore, it is easy enough to go catch your dinner, or cheap enough to buy plenty from the fishmonger. Make sure your fish is really fresh, mackerel tends to suffer after a day or two, becoming a bit mushy and losing it’s firm flakes. Look for dark silvery blue …

Paella and Navajas Rosado

On a long hot summer evening I love to see a group of friends waiting on a huge pan of Paella, drinking rose and watching the sun go down. Especially if you have gathered some of your own shellfish and others have bought fish or meats to add to the pot. All over Spain the hardware stores sell huge paella …

Osso Bucco with a big red

I bought a bottle of Sensia 2009 Tempranillo recently. The wine merchant said I’d be impressed with the strength and balance of this robust red made from old growth tempranillo from Ribera del Duero. By blending 85% old growth tempranillo with 15% of a 2007 Crianza the bodega have created a voluptuous red with a nose of deep blackberry, exotic …

Oxtail burgers

Oxtail has a gorgeous sticky meaty flavour, and makes an impressive burger, it takes a long time and this recipe is intensive. You couldn’t call this burger fast food, but I love making them for the indulgence and a what I’d say is the tastiest burger you’ve ever tried. I had the idea from a restaurant in Spain where my …

Patagonia wine Saurus

I have often dreamed of visiting Patagonia after reading Bruce Chatwin’s excellent travelogue ‘In Patagonia’ So if I see a Patagonian wine for sale I  buy it and let the taste flavour my imagination for that faraway distant land where Welsh families still live in splendid isolation. Patagonia is fast becoming a leading region in quality wines and this Sauvignon …

Chateau Figeac

After a long summer motoring across Europe they were now stuck in Bordeaux. They needed to find work on the Vendange. They scuttled about the train station trying to fettle some food. Life had been a series of adventures all summer long and now the money had definitely run out. The small group wanted to prolong the easy living of …

Sea Bass Tagine

My eldest son is off to Morocco tomorrow with his girlfriend. I am quite jealous. They fly into Marrakech and are keen to tour the south of the country. I thought I would make them a dinner of a good sea bass tagine to celebrate. At this time of year I love the warmth of a Moroccan meal. Those spices …

Slow roast belly pork

Chateau Musar and a slow baked pork belly for Salamungundi Today is the Welcombe Salamungundi, when the good people of Welcombe share a winter feast, everyone is invited to just turn up and bring some food and wine to share. Usually the table is laden with home made produce ranging from breads to desserts. The table is decorated with winter …

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Winter Playlist

This playlist was started in early January when we were in the depths of winter. However before I was finished there were some warmer days and new shoots giving a hope for the coming year, consequently you might find a bit of happiness. On the other hand if you are looking for anthemic glories of summer it won’t be here.

Leopallooza VII

We had a superb weekend at Leopallooza running the backstage and VIP bar. After serving over three hundred meals and pouring a lot of Cocktails, Wilkins farmhouse cider, and Jeremiah Weed, we were knackered and then we had the crew Sunday night party. One of the great things about Leopallooza (and there are many) is that many of the artists …

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A spring weekend

This weekend has been a taste of summer, with warm sunny days and a good swell. I was in London working with Reef and had a great skate with Jack Bessant through the streets and along the banks of the Thames. The band played two gigs, on Friday and Saturday in West London. The shows were to celebrate Reef 93 …

European Fish Fry 2011

Crackington Haven recently hosted this annual event attracting surfboard shapers from across the surfing world. A small village on the North Cornish coast, buffeted by wind and sea attracted visitors from afar as California and Italy who enjoyed the hospitality and culture of an alternative surfing scene among the high cliffs and coves.  The Fish design is generally under six …

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First day of summer

Yesterday we awoke to a warm morning, clear skies and no wind. By nine a.m. it was hot, the tide pulled off the shore and onto the banks and we had the bay to ourselves. With Richard McGonigal, Chris Hartop, and Vik Sell

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Neil Butler’s Watercolours

I met Neil in the pub yesterday and he had these watercolours with him, I really like the deft touch with brush, and the minimalism of the subject, bravo neil. If you thought perchance of wanting one of these mounted or framed you can leave a message below and I will endeavour to help- I might even get a beer out of …

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Sunday Smiles

Last Sunday (October 2nd) was the end of a superb run of fine weather and good surf. The last days of September all began with warm damp dawns, the stillness and clear skies a portent of the heat to come. The bushes full of bursting blackberries, the grasses wet with dew, and the light soft with a fine mist. As …

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