Carry On Britain does the Yorkshire Dales – Part 01 – Wensleydale Cheese

Posted by Lou on May 5, 2009 in Carry On Britain Events, Food Shopping, Places, Skincare

camping

This weekend saw the Carry on Britain team travelling to the Yorkshire Dales in search of cheese and good bitter (I know, so easily pleased). Over the next few days each one of the team will give a round up of what we did and where we went but I will kick off with a basic round up and to talk about the best and the most important (in my opinion) WENSLEYDALE CHEESE.

Ok, so this weekend the team and I packed up the car full of camping equipment and essentials such as toilet roll and beer and headed to the Yorkshire Dales. After a brief break on the side of the M61 to mourn the loss of the camping chair that fell out the roof box, we arrived in good time. We pitched up the tent (more about the campsite later) then headed out for a walk to a pub in Muker for lunch and refreshments. We spent the afternoon drinking beer, eating ploughman’s lunches and soaking up the sunshine. That evening we spent the evening making a fire (a real necessity when camping in early May) and having a bbq. It was only later when we retired to the pub to get warm that we realized soaking up the sunshine resulted in the reddest nose I have ever seen, my nose has only just returned to normal 3 days later!

On Sunday, after a rubbish nights sleep we decided to go home via Wensleydale and the Black Sheep brewery.

So now the best bit……

WENSLEYDALE CHEESE. Oh my god!!!! HEAVEN!

wensleydalewensleydale-shop1

We did the tour (which was a fantastic bargain at £2.50 per person) and saw where the cheese is made and watched a video on the whole process. All very interesting, but I was itching to get to the best bit. The shop, the shop where you can taste all the Wensleydale cheeses.

So what was on offer? Wensleydale, Mature Wensleydale, Extra Mature Wensleydale, Yorkshire Blue, Smoked Blue, Wensleydale with cranberries, blueberries, mango and papaya, Wensleydale with chives, Wensleydale with Onion and also Wensleydale with ginger. Not forgetting Goats milk Wensleydale and also Cheddar with wholegrain mustard :)

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It was brilliant. We bought loads. My favourites were the Yorkshire Blue and the Wensleydale with onions, but my ultimate favourite is Wensleydale with mango and papaya. We also brought a ginger Wensleydale cheesecake, which did rock my world – No cheesecake will ever live up to that! All in all…very exciting. After that we decided to go to the Black Sheep Brewery and then to Theakston’s Brewery where I had a bitter revelation and things went slowly downhill (in a good way) from there.

 

Blighty Bubbly – is UK wine actually any good?

Posted by Becs on Apr 10, 2009 in British Recipes, Carry On Britain Events, Food Shopping, Skincare

english-wine

It’s all very well buying English veg, meat, bread etc. You have to look that bit harder, shop in more places, sometimes spend a bit more however ultimately the great tastes and sense of smugness from eating something that is fresh, local, supports the economy and tastes great is well worth it.

However for us to still sip that Sauvignon Blanc from the Malborough region of New Zealand, or Tuscan Chianti is a bit of a cop out for the Brit Bloggers. And, lets be honest, the booze is a large chunk of our pocket money….

Thus the English Wine and Cheese Evening was announced! ‘What a superb idea’ we all bullishly cheered in a famous five fashion (but secretly worried that this was going to be an evening in drinking nasty vinegary concoctions). Oh well, the stinking bishop will mask the taste.

The big day arrived and I hadn’t bought any wine, safe in the knowledge that surely all the big supermarkets are selling Blighty Vino nowadays. But this is not so…a trip around M&S was fruitless as was Tesco. Even the trusty Co-op was focusing its efforts on the Chilean Red (so much for shop local).

So it had to be Waitrose. Brilliant that I had an excuse to legitimately shop there as my tight-fisted Yorkshire boyfriend forbids it normally.

Waitrose is where I found Chapel Down English wines.

The retailer only stocked 2 English wines and both were from Chapel Down which is a winery in Kent – the Garden Of England.

Check out their website www.englishwinesgroup.co.uk for more info on their products and their ethics.

So I bought a bottle of Chapel Down Brut and a Pinot Noir (er not very English sounding). At £16.99 the Brut is mid priced and tastes as good as any similar priced champagne. In fact it’s more than good – its really nice! The white was perhaps not light enough for my palate however (I’m not a big white wine drinker) and certainly no connoisseur.

It’s a shame that the UK cannot produce a red (for the time being my Rioja is safe) however Chapel Down offer a wide range, spanning white, rose and fizz, including a Taste of England Case of 12 bottles inc Brut for £101.00.

It was a definite eye opener and I’d buy the Brut again and would like to try to rose. We all agreed twas a huge success!

Oh, I forgot to mention that at the checkout I was asked for ID which, at the age of 31, was immensely flattering and a gargantuan ego boost. What’s more, in addition to the UK wines, its just another reason to keep visiting Waitrose…

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