Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Drinks for Christmas

I've been quite busy brewing alcohol for the Christmas period. We have a batch of beer, 20 litres of red wine and 5 litres of liquor. Ok so all of this is not just for Christmas, but it will be nice to have a range of drinks. We have six different flavours of liquor;

Cherry brandy, Mint, Chocolate, Irish cream, Orange  and coconut.

The liquor was all made from a kit which I would definately recommend, it's called 'absolutely pure spirit base kit' and it's made by 'Alcotec'. It makes 5 litres of  20% pure spirit base . I think it works out at about £1 for a litre or something like that and then you can buy flavourings to add or just have it as half proof vodka.

I buy my brewing supplies from 'Brewgenie' who have a great online shop and they have always delivered things very quickly with no problems.

* the other excellent kits for liquors that I have used before are called 'Prohibition' and they do an excellent Cherry brandy one.

** I havn't ever tried making liquors without a kit and I think it would be tough to create something that is 20% and very clear without distilling and making spirits proper???

Fencing the place

This post should have come earlier, never mind. This is one of those jobs that we very nearly paid someone to do, I'm so pleased that we didnt now. Everyone we spoke to about it would give us a look or we would hear a sharp intake of breath as they frowned about the idea of us doing the sheep fencing ourselves.

We knew i t had to be done or we couldnt really grow anything up here. The sheep have grazed this space now for hundreds of years, I don't know how long but I guess since at least when this place was built (about 270 years ago). In some ways I was quite sad to fence and interrupt the space that used to very naturally continue up into the higher hills, with sheep just roaming as they pleased.

The soil here, or lack of it does make jobs like this quite challenging, but after 3-4 hours I had all 33 posts in the ground and after another days work all 250 foot or so of the fencing was done. We now have an extra 200 feet or so of ground that could in theory grow soft fruit, if we can dump enough soil and muck there that is!

Horse muck for Christmas!

Well I'm sure lots of people wouldn't be very pleased to get a big fat pile of horse crap for Christmas! I am so so happy about it. I'm not sure Ruth is quite as pleased as me ....but she is pleased... and its her Dad that sorted it.

It's all about what the muck will grow aint it? Imagine what our Christmas present will turn into next year :) Have managed to move just a dozen barrows of muck so far and the muck is staring back at me ..."laughing"  well at least with a funny look on its very brown horrible face, as if to say...."Is that all you got?"

Have dug out some of our old raspberry canes from our old place in the valley and they look quite happy in the muck I must say. Oh yeah not sure if I blogged about fencing this place? That was quite a job but will now allow lots of stuff to be planted without the sheep munching the lot.

Shed rage

Shed rage, we've all had it...well maybe not ...but if you have had it I don't need to say anymore. Anyway we didnt have a shed. We needed a shed bad. Didn't want to buy one of these crappy skinny wood things, decided to make one from reclaimed bits n bobs. Got the base done, very strong and then then Wife Ruth found someone who had a shed that had no base that was going spare.

This is quite boring really isnt it? Sheds. Anyway to cut to the chase...got two half rotten sheds that needed lots of care and attention before they could go onto base.... the whole thing ended up taking about 6 days work, I now really really love those cheap crappy sheds, all nice,watertight and light and maybe not so crap....they do go up quickly those cheap things and they keep the rain out without patching and covering and sticking, and pathcing and sticking and covering and fixing and HITTING!!!!

We have a shed now.