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Somerset Cottage Newsletter August 2017
25th of August 2017
All of a sudden it feels lighter in the evenings when I head over to the restaurant. We've gone from the gloom of closed in winter evenings to a gentle reminder that longer days are coming. Can't wait!!
The other harbinger of spring that I particularly love this time of year, is the gradual progression of magnolia trees around town, that I can't help noticing as they burst into flower. Never all at once, which is great because it means I get to savour them for longer. Our own tree isn't quite there yet, but will be flowering very soon, and it will be simply fabulous for the fleeting time it is in bloom. And yes, we will then have to contend with all the heavy petals dropping all over our driveway tarmac and yes, that is a pain - but I still figure it's a small price to pay for the pleasure of that visual magnificence.
Not sure my husband totally concurs with me, but you get that!!
The other trigger that always happens this time of year, and serves as a not always welcome reminder that Christmas is most definitely on the way, is that we start fielding enquiries from people wanting to know when the Christmas Cookschool Series dates are going to be posted. That is usually the impetus we need to get our act together and commit to dates, which we've now done, and those are all now on the restaurant website for you to choose from and book accordingly.
Please note that we don't take bookings for the classes over the phone. I need a paper trail so as to hopefully avoid overbooking any class ( and have to confess that even with that precaution I have been known to stuff up on occasion!), so please make it easy for me!!
If you have any queries or a voucher you'd like to use, then by all means contact me on direct email at: firstname.lastname@example.org otherwise all bookings can be made via the link above on the website.
Am very, very pleased to be able to report that the Cookschool lunch table will once again be festoned with wonderful decorations from the incredibly talented Anna Robertson. I honestly can't remember now how many Christmas Series we go back with Anna, but she never ceases to amaze us with the new ideas she comes up with each and every year. We had a catchup lunch last week, not having seen each other since she did the flowers for Courteney and Laura's wedding back in February, and she was simply fizzing with ideas, so at this stage I have no idea what we're going to get but I know it will look amazing, and I know Rick will complain that once again, there isn't enough room for the food! You think he would be used to it by now!
And on a completely different subject, but one that's been entertaining a bit of my brain cell time recently, we sell alot of wine by the glass in the restaurant. That is something I want to be able to do, but am very aware that our range is too much really from a practical, financially responsible point of view, because the number of wines available means that alot of different wine bottles get opened during the week, and then ultimately those that don't get used by the kitchen, get poured down the sink - literally - because opened wine doesn't keep. I am very conscious of that wastage, but don't want to curtail the range of wines available by the glass necessarily, because alot of our customers like the opportunity to try a variety of different wines. Limiting the range to save on wastage, feels kind of wrong. But...
The wonderful Sonja from Negociants, a wine importer who I have dealt with for many, many years, spent time with me yesterday explaining how the Coravin system works, and which could spare me the depressing job of pouring wine down the plughole. We've been talking about it for awhile, and yesterday was my opportunity to actually see the system in operation.
It's incredibly nifty - and works both with screw cap wine, and also that sealed with a cork, in effect replacing the wine that you pour from a bottle with inert argon gas. That means that the wine remaining in the bottle won't taint, and will keep much longer. Three weeks for screw cap, and up to five years for cork. Perfect for my requirements.
Sonja's left me her device to have a play with over the weekend, and we'll see how it goes, but so far, so good, and I have to say I am very pleasantly impressed. There are other systems around but they are much bigger and more cumbersome, and much more of a capital outlay, so I'm getting the feeling that this is going to tick all the boxes. And in the long run save me considerable amounts of money while still being able to offer ( an ever widening!) range of wine by the glass to our customers. Like it when that happens!!
And my other bit of good news for the day, was a confirmation email from Courteney this morning confirming the date of their flight to NZ in November for summer. Having my family around me is very much my happy place, and it's a big bonus to know they're all going to be here for Christmas / summer. Like it when that happens!
And now, need to get some stuff organised for work tonight, so will leave it here. Hope we get to catch up soon.