Monday, 31 October 2011

Why Does Food And Drink On The Radio Work So Well?

Noisy chomping, presenters spluttering things like "astringent" through a mouthful of goat's cheese, gulping down wheat beer at unlikely hours, bottle tops fizzing off. Lots of "mmmms" but very few "eeuws"; on paper it looks undercooked, but lightly coddled on the radio it sounds delicious.

Nigel Barden is the expert on Simon Mayo's Radio 2 show on Thursdays. Our paths crossed briefly at BBC GLR and even back then he had the gift of making tricky recipes sound must-try-tonight simple.

Yesterday I was listening to Bill Buckley on BBC Oxford. A beer expert called Tim Hampson had taken in some local, bottled real ales to try. Thirsty within minutes. A phono with a Hook Norton brewer made me want to book a brewery tour there and then.

And then another phono with Tristan Hogg from Pieminister moved the conversation on to the essential life-skill of matching beer with pies. I had the advantage over Bill because I've eaten a few of Bristol-based Tristan's pies at their little shop on the South Bank. And they're delicious.

The chat was so mouth-wateringly effective that we immediately pulled off the M40 and headed for the Fox Country Inn in Ibstone. Steak and kidney Guinness pie and chips with a superfluous bit of lettuce. £12. Washed down with a couple of pints of local Rebellion beers (thanks to my lovely designated driver).

Bill Buckley and BBC Oxford. Job done.

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