Calling All Foodies!
Sunday, 08 June 2012
NEW FOODIE BREAKS AT THE SCARLET
Calling all fellow food enthusiasts, gastronomes, Epicureans, gourmands and the like. We're passionate about good food and drink at the Scarlet and lucky to have an array of quality produce right on our doorstep that we are proud to serve to our guests.
We've chosen some of our favourite producers and experts to host some special Foodie Breaks over the next few monthsto give you an insight into the best of Cornwall's food and drink.
All breaks are two-night stays which include breakfast and a four-course dinner paired with a wine flight on one evening.
We've put together some soupçons below to give you a liitle taster of what we'll be serving up. Enjoy!
Wild about Food: 22nd - 23rd June from £410pp
Join Adam Clark of Red&Wild - food forager and culinary adventurer extraordinaire - as he sets out from the picturesque village of St Mawgan to take you on a fascinating wander back to Mawgan Porth foraging all the way for interesting and edible goodies.
Once back at the hotel, you will learn more about what you've foraged and how it can be used in your cooking. The Scarlet Restaurant will use your foraged ingredients to create a delicious dinner, which Adam will host.
Naturally into Wine: 18th -19th July from £390pp & 14th-15th December from £305pp
A blind tasting will ‘open your eyes’ to some very interesting natural red, white and rose wines. Our own wine specialist Meeche Hudd and local wine enthusiast Jen Morgan will be there to share their passion for natural wines, share some secrets about the wines and answer any questions.
In the evening you will enjoy a 4 course dinner with perfectly paired natural wines to complement each course.
Time for Tea with Tregothnan Tea: 15th - 16th August from £390pp
Treat yourself to an exclusive tour of the fascinating Tregothnan Estate hosted by director Jonathan Jones. Tregothnan's gardens and plantations are not normally open to the public, so this is a rare opportunity to see what goes on behind the scenes at this historic working estate that's been running since 1335 and is so sustainable it has big plans for the next 700 years too!.
Return to the hotel where a range of freshly brewed Tregothnan teas will be waiting for you to taste. After your tea tasting, we can all enjoy an aperitif before heading down to our lower dining room for an amazing four-course dinner influenced by the teas you have tried that day. There will be wine pairings with each course, and Jonathon Jones will stick around to host the evening.
For some amusing tea quotations, please click here.
For more information about Tregothnan, please click here.
For the Tea Appreciation Society, please click here.
Fresh off the press with Cornish Orchards: 28th - 29th September from £415pp
Wander through the beautiful Cornish Orchards with a tour from one of their cider and apple juice experts. They will take you through the process that creates their delicious drinks and you will be able to sample the fruits of their labours!
The farm has 15 acres of orchards planted with more than 1,000 old Cornish variety apple trees and holds a Duke of Cornwall Habitat Award.
Return to the Scarlet for a mouthwatering four-course dinner influenced by ciders and apples and hosted by Andy Atkinson of Cornish Orchards and paired with a wine flight.
For more information about Cornish Orchards, please click here.
Wake Up and Smell the Coffee with Origin: 16th – 17th November from £305pp
Learn more about Origin Coffee with a tour of the roastary followed by a tasting and lesson in coffee making. Hear all about how Origin Coffee got started with no roaster, no roastery and no coffee.
It was simply a dream; in 1999 Tom Sobey came back from travelling Australia with a vision of bringing the UK coffee culture up to that of our cousins down under.
Dinner in the evening will be influenced by coffee and hosted by Tom.
Find out more about Origin Coffee here.
Price of £105 per person
To book any of our Foodie Breaks please call 01637 861800.
Online bookings are not available.
Time for Tea
Sunday, 08 June 2012
A few tea quotations for your delectation courtesy of the marvellous Victorian Teashop.
"Tea is liquid wisdom"
"I always fear that creation will expire before teatime."
"Drinking a daily cup of tea will surely starve the apothecary."
"There is a great deal of poetry and fine sentiment in a chest of tea."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
"I am a hardened and shameless tea drinker, who has for twenty years diluted his meals only with the infusion of this fascinating plant; whose kettle has scarcely time to cool; who with tea amuses the evening, with tea solaces the midnight, and with tea welcomes the evening."
"Tea is a cup of life."
"I am glad I was not born before tea. "
Rev. Sydney Smith
"The perfect temperature for tea is two degrees hotter than just right."
"There is no trouble so great or grave that cannot be much diminished by a nice cup of tea."
"If you are cold, tea will warm you. If you are too heated, it will cool you. If you are depressed, it will cheer you. If you are excited, it will calm you."
"As long as it is hot, wet and goes down the right way, it's fine with me."
"Bread and water can so easily be toast and tea."
"Is there no Latin word for Tea? Upon my soul, if I had known that I would have let the vulgar stuff alone."
"There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea."
"Another novelty is the tea-party, an extraordinary meal in that, being offered to persons that have already dined well, it supposes neither appetite nor thirst, and has no object but distraction, no basis but delicate enjoyment."
"The mere chink of cups and saucers tunes the mind to happy repose."
"Wouldn’t it be dreadful to live in a country where they didn’t drink tea?"
"What part of confidante has that poor teapot played ever since the kindly plant was introduced among us. Why myriads of women have cried over it, to be sure! What sickbeds it has smoked by! What fevered lips have received refreshment from it! Nature meant very kindly by women when she made the tea plant; and with a little thought, what a series of pictures and groups the fancy may conjure up and assemble round the teapot and cup."
William Makepeace Thakery
"Tea should be taken in solitude."
"If man has no tea in him, he is incapable of understanding truth and beauty."
" Tea is liquid wisdom. "
"While there's tea there's hope."
Sir Arthur Pinero
"Find yourself a cup of tea; the teapot is behind you. Now tell me about hundreds of things. Saki Tea to the English is really a picnic indoors."
"Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis on which the world earth revolves - slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future."
Thich Nat Hahn
"Tea's proper use is to amuse the idle, and relax the studious, and dilute the full meals of those who cannot use exercise, and will not use abstinence."
"Our trouble is that we drink too much tea. I see in this the slow revenge of the Orient, which has diverted the Yellow River down our throats."
"Tea...is a religion of the art of life."
"All true tea lovers not only like their tea strong, but like it a little stronger with each year that passes."
"A 'proper tea' is much nicer than a 'very nearly tea', which is one you forget about afterwards."
"The first cup moistens my lips and throat. The second cup breaks my loneliness. The third cup searches my barren entrails only to find therein some thousand volumes of odd ideographs. The fourth cup raises a slight perspiration - all the wrongs of life pass out through my pores. At the fifth cup I am purified. The sixth cup calls me to the realms of the immortals. The seventh cup - ah, but I could take no more! I only feel the breath of the cool wind that raises in my sleeves. Where is Elysium? Let me ride on this sweet breeze and waft away thither."
"The best quality tea must have creases like the leathern boot of Tartar horsemen, curl like the dewlap of a mighty bullock, unfold like a mist rising out of a ravine, gleam like a lake touched by a zephyr, and be wet and soft like a fine earth newly swept by rain."
"Stands the church clock at ten to three?
And is there honey still for tea?"
"As the centerpiece of a cherished ritual, it's a talisman against the chill of winter, a respite from the ho-hum routine of the day."
"Remember the tea kettle - it is always up to its neck in hot water, yet it still sings!
"Tea is instant wisdom - just add water!"
"Never trust a man who, when left alone in a room with a tea cozy, doesn't try it on."
"You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me."
"Bring me a cup of tea and 'The Times'.”
Queen Victoria, on her accession to the throne
"Teaism is a cult founded on the adoration of the beautiful among the sordid facts of everyday existence. It inculcates purity and harmony, the mystery of mutual charity, the romanticism of the social order."
"Come, oh come, ye tea-thirsty restless ones, the kettle boils, bubbles and sings musically."
"If two women should pour from the same pot, one of them will have a baby within a year."
"Two teaspoons accidentally placed together on a saucer, points to a wedding or a pregnancy."
"My dear, if you could give me a cup of tea to clear my muddle of a head I should better understand your affairs."
"Wouldn’t it be dreadful to live in a country where they didn’t drink tea?"
"The spirit of the tea beverage is one of peace, comfort and refinement."
"Tea! thou soft, thou sober sage and venerable liquid... thou female tongue-running, smile-smoothing, heart-opening, wind-tippling cordial, to whose glorious insipidity I owe the happiest moment of my life. – Let me fall prostrate."
"Enjoy life sip by sip, not gulp by gulp."
The Minister of Leaves
"Tea – the cups that cheer but not inebriate."
"I am in no way interested in immortality,
but only in the taste of tea."
"One sip of this will bathe the drooping spirits in delight beyond the bliss of dreams.
...for tea, though ridiculed by those who are naturally coarse in their nervous sensibilities, or are become so from wine-drinking, and are not susceptible of influence from so refined a stimulant, will always be the favoured beverage of the intellectual...
Thomas De Quincy
"Surely every one is aware of the divine pleasures which attend a wintry fireside; candles at four o'clock, warm hearthrugs, tea, a fair tea-maker, shutters closed, curtains flowing in ample draperies to the floor, whist the wind and rain are raging audibly without."
Thomas De Quincey
Tea and Poetry
At last the secret is out,
as it always must come in the end,
The delicious story is ripe to tell an intimate friend;
Over tea-cups and in the square the tongue has its desire;
Still waters run deep, my dear,
there's never smoke without fire.
The cozy fire is bright and gay,
The merry kettle boils away
and hums a cheerful song.
I sing the saucer and the cup;
Pray, Mary, fill the teapot up,
And do not make it strong.
Now stir the fire, and close the shutters fast,
Let fall the curtains, wheel the sofa around,
And while the bubbling and loud-hissing urn
Throws up a steamy column, and the cups
That cheer but not inebriate, wait on each,
So let us welcome peaceful evening in.
We had a kettle, we let it leak;
Our not replacing it made it worse,
We haven't had any tea for a week...
The bottom is out of the Universe!
Steam rises from a cup of tea
and we are wrapped in history,
inhaling ancient times and lands,
comfort of ages in our hands.
I invite you magnanimously
to please be my guest for tea
at a room with high standards of taste
where the hostess remembers my face
and greets me by name at the door
and recalls what I've ordered before
and inquires kindly after my day,
and appreciates all that I say.
She'll have orange pekoe for the pot
and darjeeling, as likely as not,
or if you are not in the pink
our hostess knows which herbs to drink,
like ginger to help with the grippe
mixed with cinnamon and the rose hip;
or fresh lemon balm if you wish,
perhaps blended with sweet licorice.
So whether you feel well or ill,
this refreshment will quite fit the bill
and, of course, you will quite enjoy me.
Yours truly. RSVP
I'M A LITTLE TEA POT
I'm a little teapot, short and stout.
Here is my handle,
(one hand on hip)
here is my spout
(other arm out straight)
When I get all steamed up, hear me shout
Just tip me over and pour me out!
(lean over and tip arm out like a spout)
I'm a clever teapot, yes it's true
Here's an example of what I can do
I can change my handle to my spout
(switch arm positions and repeat tipping motion)
Just tip me over and pour me out!
My Incredible Spa Journey
Saturday, 07 June 2012
The Incredible Spa Journey
by Genevra Fletcher
Forget 19. That nagging, hectoring voice in my head is going at me 91 to the dozen. I’m rushing to make my appointment at the Scarlet Spa for a relaxing four-hour spa journey, but all I can focus on is the sound of the synapses in my brain as they snap, crackle and pop with connections, to dos, regrets and remembers.
Hate late. Four hours for a spa treatment? Too long to leave twins with mum. Guilty. Washing. Peanut butter. Thank you cards.
It seems I have a case of Reverse L’Oreal Syndrome…because I’m NOT worth it.
Taking the stairs two at a time, I arrive at the bottom where the hushed hallows of the Scarlet Spa bring me to an abrupt halt.
The synapses are still snapping, but soon I hear the spa talking too.
First the low lights and muted tones begin to murmur. Then music and incense waft into my consciousness as therapists in fetching Hong Kong Phooey outfits wander by, each with their own serene grace and gentle smile.
I’ve crossed the border into Scarlet Spa world and it really is another country down here.
Sinking into the squishy waiting room sofa, I fill in my ‘What’s Your Dosha Type?’ questionnaire and drink in the vista before me: a view of the spa pool with its turquoise waters rippling towards a glass wall, then outside to the reed-filtered natural pool. From there, two scarlet red hot tubs catch my eye and lead me to the sea beyond.
The jaw dropping view of the indoor pool, with the outdoor pool and sea beyond.
Yes, the architecture of the spa is really talking to me now (call the men in white coats). I hear it clearly. It’s saying: “Calm. Down.”
Soon lovely Liz – spa therapist guide for my four-hour epic Journey - ushers me into a darkened room to discuss my dosha type.
Gently, deftly, with just the right injection of humour, Liz asks me all about myself. Bizarre…I’m not used to this sort of treatment. As a working single mummy of four-year-old twins, I don’t get out much, most of my conversations revolve around Cinderella and farting, and people rarely - very rarely - ask about me.
Frankly, the consultation just gets weirder. Liz does not ask me to play the glass slipper game (just one more time mummy, PLEASE!). Nor does she tell me that she needs a poo, or that I am a stinky poo, or that I have a stinky poo face - though admittedly the dosha questionnaire does include a section on bowel movements.
No. Liz eschews poo and instead asks me about me. As I said, very odd. Bit uncomfortable to be honest. I find myself saying ‘thank you’ and ‘sorry’ a lot - sorry for sneezing, sorry for not understanding a question, in general sorry for existing. Alarmed by this outbreak of Sorryitis and Obsessive Compulsive Thank You Disorder (OCTYD), I try to turn the tables back to my default setting: “Umm, so Liz, this must be quite intense eh? Hard work? Being a spa therapist?”
Liz is having none of it. Oh hell, this is about me.
She ushers me to my changing room and gives me simple, clear instructions as to what I need to take off (everything bar the bra, removal of which is optional) and what I need to put on (lovely organic cotton taupe dressing gown and fetching paper pants). I’m relieved to be given clear guidance on the clothes-removal issue. I still have nightmares about my first day at infant school. When the teacher told us to get undressed for PE one unfortunate girl took everything off – knickers and all – and never lived it down.
One of the tented treatment rooms.
I stretch my sandpaper body out on the heated hamman table acutely aware of my parched, neglected skin, but before long the spa’s alchemy has begun.
Soon, I am inhabiting one of my favourite paintings. I am one of Ingres’ odalisques. As Liz gets to work with a salt scrub then slathers me in mineral rich mud I become a bather in one of his opulent Turkish bath scenes.
Ingres' Valpicon Bather, aka me, and some of his Turkish bathers for good measure.
In the warm half-light of the hamman, I feel beautiful for the first time in far too long.
Next, she guides me through a gentle meditation. All the while my Vata dosha screams resistance in my ear: “You don’t have time for this and you’re so NOT worth it’.
Meanwhile, lying face down on the treatment couch has started a river of snot pouring from my nose. Embarrassed by my nasal Niagra, which by now is cascading onto the couch, it takes me a while to pluck up the courage to ask for a tissue.
There’s something about the deft way Liz produces the box, then covers her hand with a clean hanky and safely encloses my germy one with it that makes me feel at ease again. Liz has clearly dealt with runny noses and worse before, the couch has a towel protecting it and I realize there’s no need for me to feel uncomfortable.
After a meditation session guided by Liz ("Get on with it!" screams the Vata in me), I’m left for 10 minutes to lounge decadently in the Light Relax room looking out to sea, pop grapes in my mouth and feel as though life couldn’t get much better.
The marvellous Light Relax Room.
Until, of course, Liz comes to collect me for the next stage of my journey and I manage to kick over my fruit platter, shattering both it and the silence. Liz just grins.
She leads me into a darkened room filled with six swinging pods suspended from the ceiling. Here I am supposed to absorb the benefits of my treatment. I clamber in and immediately feel at sea in a curricle on a dark night, empty sea around me, star lit sky above. My pod swings forward and back, then round a bit until a pair of feet come into view.
The swinging pods.
It takes a moment for my blissed out brain to compute; when it does I want to giggle. The feet are sticking out of an adjacent pod. Suddenly I am a sextuplet, suspended in my amniotic sac. The pod keeps on swinging and occasionally I see a sibling drift in and out of view.
Alone in my pod I feel a slight sense of shame for not taking better care of myself, for sweeping along on a tsunami surge of manic adrenalin leaving devastation and broken plates in my wake.
That night, I go to bed in my hotel room overlooking the beach with the sound of the sea lapping at my ears. I fall into a fathomless sleep undisturbed by dreams and wake to find my body has drunk a deep draught of Lethe.
In the morning, the voices are still there, but they’re quieter, calmer, more reassuring.
They are telling me that I’m cured – cured of my Sorryitis and my OCTYD, and my incredible Journey has even successfully reversed my reverse L’Oreal syndrome.
It seems I am worth it after all.
Did I say thanks Liz? Sorry. Thank you2.