Thursday, 28 February 2013

Depression session!

We are not surprised to discover that soft drinks and particularly diet soft drinks may cause depression, with a 22% (or 31% for diet soft drinks) increased likelihood that soft drink consumers will have been diagnosed with depression. The American researchers emphasise that there is only an association and not a causality, but what surprises us most is that the people surveyed were between 50 and 71! Are we alone in thinking that if they haven't progressed on to wine by that sort of age then they are certainly likely to be depressed?

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Ages Old

A new system for 'ageing' spirits is set to land from the United States. This uses ultrasonic energy and oxidation to mimic the chemical changes normally achieved by the natural ageing process. It is rather unclear as to why this should be needed. Brandy and whisky have minimum genuine ageing requirements whilst gin and vodka are not spirits that require age - and the UK is not reputed for its rum production! This leaves the only potential for the system to age spirits such as vodka or gin that do not normally receive it. This probably leaves scope for 'new improved' vodka that is, for example, darker and more substantial. Though it must be doubtful whether 'artificially aged' on the label will have customers flocking....

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Bootleg Electricity

It is not often we praise Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs but full marks to them for putting all the bootleg alcohol they seize through anaerobic digestion to produce biogas (methane and carbon dioxide) and then to produce electricity.

Not an urban myth

There is much fuss in Bordeaux about a Russian Oligarch who bought a run down Château and with a view to returning it to its former glory, got planning permission to demolish some outhouses. The council were very surprised when they discovered that the outhouses were still standing but the Château had been completely razed to the ground. Yes, the builders were Polish and yes, the Russian Oligarch has promised to reinstate the Château brick by brick and no there wasn't (yet) a vineyard attached..