If only you had a crystal ball. This is what ours is telling us will be on trend for 2019. In no particular order ...

    Chilled red wines- unoaked, lighter bodied reds such as Pinot Noir, Gamay (Beaujolais), Cabernet Franc from the Loire and Tempranillo's. We know that reds don't always have to be served at room temperature so this year expect to find more restaurants offering to chill your red wine, especially if we get another heatwave summer.

    Gazoz- with the ever growing interest in things fermented and botanicals, Gazoz (main picture) is an Israeli soda based drink, made with natural fruit syrups (often from fermented fruits) fresh fruits, botanical infusions and herbs topped up with fizzy water. It's going to be this years addition to the increasingly popular shrubs and drinking vinegars of 2018. Find it on the menu at Bala Baya.Southwark. London.

    Rum- Gin might be left on the shelf in favour of rum, which we are very happy about being part Caribbean foodies. White, gold, flavoured, spiced, dark, premium and overproof, there is no single standard and it's no longer the sole preserve of sailors and pirates. Want to know more? Follow Ian Burrell our favourite Rum Ambassador or try a Rum Masterclass at Cottons. We must go again!

    Afro-Caribbean- well this is rather a broad area in terms of food and drink. The rise of North and West African cuisine is now well established. Mr SuffolkFoodie is from Durban so we are pinning our hopes on seeing more from South Africa, heavily influenced by the fruity and full bodied flavours of Cape Malay cuisine along with the French and Dutch influence of the European settlers. (Keep an eye out in the recipe book for our own family recipes). As for Caribbean cuisine look out for Rastafarian Ital cooking which is natural, plant based and organic. Plantains will feature too, we're getting bored with avocadoes and cauliflowers, plantains make great snacks. Tostones will be in!

    Lard - the big fat comeback. Butter prices have gone through the roof and restaurants are looking at keeping menus affordable and innovative. The Italians love it and it's a mainstay of Mexican cooking and it's not as bad for you as you thought. Love a lardy cake don't you? Get barding and larding everyone.

    Sardines- healthy, sustainable, delicious and affordable. One of our favourites and used in many types of cuisine from around the world. From spiced and fried whole in Indian recipes to the delicious Pasta Con le Sarde of Sicily, proving that they are versatile too. Bring on summer for some more delicious Portugeuse sardines cooked over the open fire.

    Breakfasts - using rise and shine orange and yellow food which is Instagrammable. We'll be eating food because it's photogenic and can be hashtagged 'feel good' or 'sunshine food'. So we are guessing mango, oranges, lemon curd, pumpkin, carrots, things with saffron and God forbid no more turmeric lattes.

    Grocerants - grocery stores and deli's with sit down dining, ready to eat, ready to heat food. The type of place that you go to buy the components of a take away supper then think dammit, if I eat it here it will save me washing up.

    Waste not want not - zero waste cooking with wonky veg and root to fruit dishes will stay in vogue and so will the meaty nose to tail eating we've enjoyed over the past few years. Fig leaves will be very popular, brussel sprouts are making a big comeback, look out for Kalettes, broccoli stems, radish tops and carrot tops. But let's make sure that it's tasty please?

    Bread - it's back. More ancient grains, sprouted grains, cornbread and vegetable stuffed doughs. Apricot breakfast bread, potato, pumpkin and onion baguettes, flatbreads, Earl Grey teacakes. You name it we will be kneading it. Sorghum will be the grain of 2019. Cheerio quinoa!

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    Published in Trends
    Wednesday, 06 July 2016 15:13

    Rum ... one of our favourites

    We were introduced to this gorgeous Venezualan Diplomatico rum at Victualler in Wapping. Well worth a visit if you like organic, biodynamic, raw and natural wines. A lovely enthusiastic owner who is happy to share his knowledge too!

    Published in Thirsty Foodie
    Saturday, 06 July 2013 00:00

    Rum Tasting

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    The perfect thing to do on a hot Saturday afternoon - book a rum tasting at Cottons in Camden. We went for a birthday treat and tasted six rums and two cocktails from all over the Caribbean. With their Global Rum Ambassador Ian Burrell away in Cuba we had the session with Andre, his nephew, who soon had us behind the bar mixing the cocktails. It was one of the best £25 I've ever spent, we left in a VERY good mood!

    Published in Bar foodie
    Saturday, 03 September 2011 14:23

    I'm in love with my ice-cream machine

    I have always wanted an ice cream maker but I thought they were far too expensive for me at about £250 plus, but I had a look at Lakeland, the 'home of creative kitchenware' where I saw a Cuisinart one for £69.99 and decided to buy it. You just have to freeze the bowl overnight but that didn't seem too difficult to me. Thirty minutes later you have a litre of the most fab ice cream. They say 'it's noisy' - but I say 'don't stand in the kitchen then...' I have made two lots - mulberry, and rum and raisin, and I am going to have to put it away now because if I don't I'm going to need to buy their Fat Trapper as well. 

    Published in Puddings and desserts