The Anonymous Widower

A Delicious Meal For A Coeliac In A Fast-Food Restaurant

When I was diagnosed as a coeliactwenty years ago, fast-food restaurants were all gluten-full and alcohol, especially beer that I prefer was absent.

But look at these pictures of my lunch.

I ate in Leon in Leadenhall Market.

Gluten-free food has certainly changed for the better.

October 9, 2018 Posted by | Food | , , , , | Leave a comment

A Fast Food Restaurant With Gluten-Free Beer In An Iconic Location

Leadenhall Market is one of the City of London’s iconic locations.

Leon have an outlet and I was surprised to find that it sells Estrella Damm Daura, a very reasonable Spanish gluten-free beer.

I’ll experiment one day, to see how a beer goes with Lean’s excellent gluten-free chicken nuggets.

The restoration of the market was done in 1990 by students, as I posted in No Budget; Employ Students.

I actually walked through at eleven o’clock on a Sunday morning, and it was good to see the City more open at that time.

In a couple of years, the City will become one of the must-see places to go in London and the best time will be the weekend.

October 9, 2018 Posted by | Food, World | , , , | Leave a comment

Should We Exempt Low Alcohol Beer And Wine From The Age Regulations

I drink Marks & Spencer ).5% Southwold Pale Ale for four main reasons.

  • It is low alcohol and doesn’t interact with the Warfarin, that I am prescribed to control the INR of my blood, so I don’t have another stroke.
  • Because it is made with less barley, it appears to be gluten-free to my body.
  • It also has the proper taste of real beer.
  • It is brewed by Adnams in Suffolk and I started drinking their beers at fourteen under supervision of my father, whilst we played snooker in Felixstowe Conservative Club.

As my GP says, at 0.25 alcohol units a 500 ml bottle, you’d have difficult drinking enough to affect your health.

There is one annoying thing about it and that is buying it.

This morning, I bought three bottles in the M & S store at the Angel, where my family has been shopping since before the First World War.

As I usually do, I used one of the automatic tills and had to wait for a minute or so, whilst the assistant verified that I was over eighteen.

The store was busy and she was helping someone with another till.

I wonder what would happen at the checkouts, if there was no age check on low alcohol beer and wine.

  • It would obviously speed up the tills with some customers.
  • But would it have the affect of brewers and winemakers, making more quality low alcohol products?
  • And would these be purchased by those who knew they should cut their alcohol intake?

It’s probably one of those ideas, that would go down well in London boroughs like Barnet, Islington and Richmond, but how would it go down in places where alcohol was a necessary way of life for many?

How too, would such a drink fit with those of a Muslim faith?

September 19, 2018 Posted by | Food, Health | , , | 7 Comments

Re-Use Rather Than Re-Cycle

I remember in the 1970s or 1980s hearing the Research Director of Pilkington on Radio 4, giving a defence of using glass as packaging.

He argued that one of the problems with glass coffee jars and sauce bottles was that after use and a quick wash, they looked like they could be refilled with new product. In those days, coffee jars were often used for the storage of small items like screws, clips and dry foods like rice and pasta.

Now we’ll buy a designer jars, like these from IKEA.

In those days a lot of milk and beer bottles were returned to the dairy or brewery, but are we going to send empty beer bottles back to some of the exotic places from where they came.

The Research Director argued, that the best thing to do with glass bottles was to smash them up and re-use for other purposes.

One of the uses he discussed was to use broken glass as an aggregate substitute in road construction. This does happen and I’ve read of by-passes being constructed on a bed of broken glass and seen broken glass being used under paving slabs.

Glass came from materials dug out of the ground and it’s going back under.

He also said that to create new bottles was cheaper, than reusing bottles, unless there was a direct link, like milk rounds from a dairy.

This morning on wake Wake Up To Money, they were discussing cutting the use of plastics. So I sent in the following text.

I wonder if black-plastic ready-meal trays could be replaced with a light-weight glass variant. Along with bottles, they would just be washed and crushed after use for aggregate. Several roads have been built on broken bottles.

It was read out.

Consider.

  • We drink a lot of beer that comes in glass bottles.  One of my beer bottles from Marks and Spencer weughs 280 grams.
  • They would be oven-proof, microwave-safe and freezable.
  • You could eat your meal out of the dish!
  • They might save on washing-up time.
  • They could go in the dry-recycling after a quick rinse.

But above all, they may have other uses.

I also suspect that the other pakaging could be similar.

Could a piece of plastic be glued to the tray in the same way?

My idea is probably total rubbish!

But some of Marks and Spencer’s pies already come in just an aluminium tray and a cardboard box.

They need to be cooked in an oven and are not microwavable.

The pie goes down the gullet and the aluminium tray and the cardboard box, go into the dry recycling.

One thing I will be right about, is to say that there are some clever packaging scientists and designers out there, trying to create a freezable ready-meal, that can be cooked in a microwave, that isn’t protected in anything that can’t go direct in the dry recycling.

 

 

 

April 26, 2018 Posted by | Food | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Thoughts On Alcoholism

In the last month or so, I’ve done something that I’ve never done before in my life.

I’ve drunk perhaps half a bottle of beer when I’ve got up. Admittedly, I’d left the bottle half finished by my computer.

It was good.

In the 1960s, I could drink a lot of beer. I just seemed to need it.

About that time, I decided I needed to drink large amounts of fluids and swapped to tea and Coke.

My doctor understands my needs for fluids and the practice nurse has the same problem. The nurse puts it down to leaky skin, which he has.

I actually love walking in the rain, so that might help explain it. We all live by the laws of physics.

My father warned me off alcohol in a practical way, by giving me halves of Adnams down at Felixstowe Conservative Club, whilst we played snooker, when I was about fourteen.

My father drank a lot of fluids, but I never saw him drunk and most doctors would say he was a sensible drinker. Like me, he also drank a lot of tea!

He had a reason to control his drinking! His father had died from complications of being an alcoholic at 40, when my father was about twenty.

My grandfather had lived just around the corner from where I live now and my father had once told me, he had drunk large amounts of beer and had moved on to whisky.

Around 1900, there was very little to drink except beer, so did my grandfather’s need for fluids mean that he turned to what was available?

Now I like a good beer and know of its properties to slake a thirst when you’re dry. I’ve worked in foundries in the 1960s and beer was always available.

So is there a type of person, who needs a lot of fluids and if beer is available they turn to it. In some cases does this lead to alcoholism.

As to myself, I must have gluten-free beer and because I’m on Warfarin, I must keep my alcohol consumption down.

So I now drink a gluten-free beer, that is just 0.25 of a unit and tastes like real beer from Marks and Spencer.

But then it is real beer, as it is brewed in Southwold by Adnams.

My life has come full circle.

 

 

March 18, 2018 Posted by | Food, World | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Pizza Again Last Night

It’s not often, I’ve ate pizza two nights running, but last night I went to Pizzesco after Cielo di Berlino in Berlin.

Both were gluten-free and washed done with Lammsbrau gluten-free beer.

If you give Pizza Express 7 out of 10, then Berlin would be 8 and Munich 9 or 10.

The only trouble with Pizzesco is that it gets busier every time I go.

February 14, 2018 Posted by | Food | , , , , | 1 Comment

Sainsbury’s Now Sell Celias!

I took this picture in the Angel branch of Sainsbury’s.

I only buy the odd bottle these days, as the Adnams Southwold Pale Ale 0.5%, which is available in Marks and Spencer is more to my taste.

 

February 8, 2018 Posted by | Food, Health | , , , | Leave a comment

Chilled Marks and Spencer’s 0.5% Southwold Pale Ale

I took this picture of Marks and Spencer’s 0.5% Southwold Pale Ale in the fridge of their store on Finsbury Pavement in the City of London.

Not that it needed to be cooled today, as it was real bass monkey weather.

December 9, 2017 Posted by | Food | , , , | Leave a comment

Two Units Of Adnams Beer

This picture shows eight bottles of Marks and Spencer’s 0.5% Southwold Pale Ale, which is brewed by Adnams.

Astonishingly, there are just 2 units of alcohol, which cost just £12.80 in total.

But even more astonishingly, the beer has a good taste for a low-alcohol beer.

November 27, 2017 Posted by | Food | , , | Leave a comment

The Finest Low-Alcohol Gluten-Free Beer In The World

In some ways this is an open letter to Archie Norman and Jonathan Adnams, who are respectively chairman of Marks and Spencer and Adnams Brewery.

Adnams brew Southwold Pale Ale 0.5% for Marks and Spencer.

I have three medical conditions.

  • I am coeliac, which means I must avoid gluten.
  • I’ve had a stroke and am on Warfarin, which means I can’t drink too much alcohol.
  • I have a need to drink lots of fluids and I find beer is best.

So I need a low-alcohol and gluten-free beer, that has all the thirst-quenching properties of beer.

I should say that my grandfather had the same need to drink a lot and he eventually turned into a serious alcoholic and died at the age of just forty.

I am now seventy and started drinking halves of Adnams at fourteen in Felixstowe Conservative Club, whilst playing snooker with my father.  Since a stroke seven years ago, I’ve probably never drunk more than ten units of alcohol in a week.

The Southwold Pale Ale 0.5% satisfies my need for a low-alcohol beer and it has a quality taste, that I very much like.

When I was diagnosed  as a coeliac twenty years ago, one of the problems was finding a decent gluten-free beer. So I had a discussion with a brewer at Adnams and he said that their beers could be gluten-free.

But I never tried one!

However, after testing a few bottles of Southwold Pale Ale 0.5% , I was convinced that the beer was low enough in gluten not to have any ill-effects on my body.

But then surely, a low-alcohol beer must be made with less barley to create the low-alcohol level!

I think Southwold Pale Ale 0.5% is a superb beer.

Don’t just take my word for it!

In the reviews on the Marks and Spencer web site, these are some of the titles.

  • Favourite Low Alcohol Option
  • Best Low Alc Beer I’ve Tried Yet
  • Excellent Low Alcohol Pale Ale

Two other reviewers complain about the availability of the product.

Research shows that as many as one-in-fifty of the population of the UK could be coeliac.

Conclusion

Improving the availability of this product could be good for all concerned.

 

Then

November 19, 2017 Posted by | Food | , , | Leave a comment