The 5 tastiest things I ate and drank over Christmas

Roast Rib of Beef

How have I never had this before!?

We pushed aside the cries for a bird for Christmas Dinner this year and went caveman instead. A massive 3 Rib Roast that looked like something you'd hang off the side of Fred Flinstones motor.

It was charred and caramelised on the outside, with creamy, melting fat marbling and a beautifully pink centre. It was the best roast beef I've ever eaten.

Hands down.

Anchor Christmas 2011 (keg)

Sweet burnt toffee aroma, molasses, a little treacle and gingerbread. Much darker than I was expecting, it's almost black with an off white, foamy head. The flavour is sweet and slightly syrupy, with a big flavour of bonfire toffee and licourice, a smidge of soy sauce, and just a bit of rum tinged booze in the finish (perhaps oweing to the sweetness).

It also has an American nutty brown ale character and a very slight bit of Hazlelnut espresso hiding in the background. Stylistically I haven't got a clue what you'd call this, possibly a dark brown ale? Though it definately has a Christmassy edge. Lovely stuff.

Beef and Mustard Baps with Mikkeller Beer Geek Breakfast

This was a perfect Boxing Day hangover cure. The kind of thing you can enjoy before sloping off for a nap on the sofa, which is exactly what I did.

Leftover Rib beef on good quality white baps with a smidge of good butter and two types of mustard (English and Wholegrain) and just a touch of salt and pepper, it's about as good as sandwiches get and went amazingly well with the smooth, coffee tinged, lushciousness of the Mikkeller beer. Speaking of which, I really liked this Beer but is it worth the hefty price tag? It's a good stout, it's a very good stout in fact. But it's not a 'wow' beer. Which at this price, I want.

Still, very good and worth a try.

Bristol Beer Factory Southville Hop

This hoppy little number was a recommendation from the ever reliable Rob (HopZine) when I bumped in to him on a that-weird-bit-between-christmas-and-new-year trip to Beer Ritz. It's a really satisfyingly bitter hoppy pale amber ale with plenty of body and a nice underlying sweetness behind bags of tropical fruit scented hops. Despite it's strength (6.5%) I finished a bottle of this in Liver crunchingly quick time because it was so damned tasty.

My first beer from these guys and what a way to start.

Mim's Aubergine fritters

Remember my post about Mauritian Food? Well Colette's Grandma (Mim) whipped us up her own Mauritian speciality this New Years Day - Aubergine fritters.

Very thinly sliced (I don't know how she does it) rounds of Aubergine seasoned with salt and pepper and dunked in a thick milk and flour based batter flavoured with spring onion, shallot, parsley, and plenty of salt and pepper, then shallow fried in hot oil until golden brown and meltingly soft in the middle.

They sound simple, but taste phenomenal, and served alongside some mango and scotch bonnet hot sauce are perfect finger food. You can tell how good they are by the fact I didn't take a photo of therm once they were cooked, they would've all been gone by the time I pressed down on the flash.


  1. Some years back, after a string of disappointing beef roasts, we tried rib of beef and have never looked back. We no longer bother with any other joints, but simply have beef a little less often. As there are only two of us, we alternate between bone-in and boned rib but either way, it's always delicious. The joints supermarkets recommend / label for roasting just aren't as good, in my opinion!

  2. sooooooo got to try those fritters with the hot sauce!

  3. I know quite a few people that opted for rib of beef this year. Look tremendous. Shame the missus doesn't eat anything with a bone, or that remotely looks like part of an animal. BBF is just down the road from me. Great beers.

  4. Agree with Kavey about "roasting" joints in supermarkets. Hugh F-W's "Meat" never seems to suggest roasting for those cuts. Still, he's gone all veggie :)

    So how much was the Mikkeller?

    How thick were the aubergine slices? Were they salted before cooking?

  5. That beef looks great, also agree you can't beat rib for roasting. Where did you get it from?

  6. San - I actually got the Mikkeller at a great price but I bought it in Belgium here: so I only paid 5 Euros. But they cost a lot more than that over here.

    Dave - My brother bought the beef from his local butchers in Beverley. You could tell it was going to be good even before it was cooked. I think we paid £35 because we bought a load of other stuff but a large 3 Rib like this is normally about 340 i think. It was awesome.