“Honest to God. Is that sign for real?” I thought to myself when I saw it in a shop window in Leith Walk. I looked again. Yes, it really did say: ‘We sell organic, vegan, and biodynamic wines.’ I could hear my granny say, “I’ll biodynamic you!” I know I sound like an old cynic here, but really!? Isn’t it just wine?
Time to read up on it: Biodynamic wines are made by employing biodynamic methods both to grow the fruit and during the post-harvest processing. (I’m still no further forward.) This includes organic farming methods, soil supplements prepared according to specific formulae, and following a planting calendar that depends upon astronomical configurations. Well there you go then! I convince myself that it is as crazy as it sounds. I wonder if anyone actually goes into an off-licence to ask for a bottle of biodynamic? I wonder it would give less of a hangover? I ran a quick poll among a group of women I was dining with last night; nobody had heard of it, they told me I was making it up. Maybe the biodynamic craze has yet to hit Ireland.
But there are some things you just couldn’t make up – although someone somewhere does. During the summer I got the ferry back from Ireland and as I drove up the west coast of Scotland I spotted a huge sign in an Ayrshire field that read: ‘Freshly dug artisan tatties for sale.’ What a brilliant piece of nonsense advertising. I wondered what made them artisan? Probably the price, 50p more a kilo, or some such.
We really prick up our ears when we hear of something different and I am as easily led to the next food and drink fad as anyone. Unless it is quite obviously silly. I heard a young woman on the radio who was advising on clean eating. “My rule of thumb is never to eat anything that’s beige in colour.” I couldn’t have been the only listener bristling. “Sure tea’s beige!” I shouted at the radio. “And porridge, and toast, and pasta, and chicken, and digestive biscuits, and mashed potatoes. Half the children of the country would starve if they didn’t eat beige food!” I was in full rant, listing the basics of my diet before I checked myself, deciding there are more important things to take a stand against than someone else’s kooky food habits.
Enough whining on. I’m off to have some breakfast, the feature colour of which will, of course, be beige!