Food & Drink: Diary

SOME OF Gastropod's best friends are vegetarians, but that doesn't mean this slimeball can resist a dig in their spare ribs.

National Vegetarian Week ends tomorrow, but culminates today in a gathering of the like-minded in Manchester for the unappetisingly named Vegfest '99, the UK's only Vegetarian Food and Lifestyle Festival.

What's this about lifestyle? Aren't you always saying you don't necessarily wear sandals? There will be barbecues and food stalls, cookery demonstrations and inflatables. Vegfest '99, The Castlefield Events Arena, Liverpool Road, Manchester (0161-834 4026). Free, 11am-5.30pm.

MEANWHILE, IN London yesterday, Club Gascon on Smithfield Market closed for the day as a posse of animal-lovers, activists and anarchists gathered in the flesh-pots to protest about global capitalism.

The restaurant, which specialises in the cuisine of south-west France, notably foie gras, decided it would be a good idea to shut up shop. This may have been less to do with the fact that it works wonders with engorged goose livers, more because it is a favoured trough for City swells and fat cats - and any persistent omnivore who can get a table. On the other side of Smithfield, St John's crusading carnivorous chef, Fergus Henderson, was made of sterner stuff and carried on serving pigs' tails and chitterlings regardless.

TO MARKET, to market to cut out the middle-men. This summer, almost a score of Farmers' Markets are blossoming around Britain, selling local produce direct to the public. Today there's one in the Kent town of Wye (9am-1pm), home of the agricultural college; tomorrow, Ashford in Kent plays host to 40 stallholders in the High Street (10am-2pm). The theme of their first monthly market (every third Sunday) is strawberries, but stallholders drawn from a 40-mile radius include organic wine-makers, a free-range egg producer, the south-east's only duck farmer, fresh meat suppliers, and pickle- and chutney-makers. There will be tomatoes, honeys, herbs, new potatoes and goat's cheese, too. The next will feature the first national cherry-stone spitting championship. You can't say you haven't been warned.

IN THE just-add-water department, there were panic stations here when the Rock's Organic Orange Squash ran out. The local health-food shop only stocks Rock's stronger (and more expensive at pounds 2.95 a bottle which makes three litres) cordials such as Summer Fruits, Ginger, Tangerine, and Elderflower.

Parched inquiries revealed that Tesco, Waitrose and Sainsbury's have a monopoly on the orange and lemon squashes (pounds 2.49 for five litres). I demand orange squash within crawling distance. Now.

ROBINSONS, WHICH calls itself the maker of the nation's favourite soft drinks, would probably describe Rock's quaffable squashes as "dilutables", which is how it refers to its own Fruit & Barley range. The company is "celebrating 60 years on the Umpire's chair at Wimbledon". After being sedentary for so long, is it any wonder that Lemon Barley Water can be recommended for alleviating kidney and waterworks complaints?

GOOD KITCHEN equipment must count as one of the best reasons for getting married. The single among us are only too aware how much it costs, and recognise a good deal when we see one. Setting a sprat to catch a mackerel, Jerry's Home Store is offering in its summer sale (26 June till end of July) a chrome Waring blender for pounds 99 (was pounds 149) to those who spend pounds 50 or more in the store. There are Home Stores in London and the south-east - call 0171-581 0909 for details.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Mark, Katie and Sanjay in The Apprentice boardroom
TV
Arts and Entertainment

Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites

Arts and Entertainment
Frances O'Connor and James Nesbitt in 'The Missing'

TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations

Arts and Entertainment
Joey Essex will be hitting the slopes for series two of The Jump

TV

Who is taking the plunge?
Arts and Entertainment
Katy Perry as an Ancient Egyptian princess in her latest music video for 'Dark Horse'

music
Arts and Entertainment
Dame Judi Dench, as M in Skyfall

film
Arts and Entertainment
Morrissey, 1988

TV
Arts and Entertainment
William Pooley from Suffolk is flying out to Free Town, Sierra Leone, to continue working in health centres to fight Ebola after surviving the disease himself

music
Arts and Entertainment
The Newsroom creator Aaron Sorkin

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Matt Berry (centre), the star of Channel 4 sitcom 'Toast of London'

TVA disappointingly dull denouement
Arts and Entertainment
Tales from the cryptanalyst: Benedict Cumberbatch in 'The Imitation Game'

film
Arts and Entertainment
Pixie Lott has been voted off Strictly Come Dancing 2014

Strictly
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

    Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

    The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
    Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

    Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

    The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
    Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

    The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

    Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas
    La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

    Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

    The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
    10 best high-end laptops

    10 best high-end laptops

    From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
    Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

    Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

    The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
    Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

    Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

    The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
    Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

    'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

    After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
    Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

    Homeless Veterans campaign

    Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
    Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

    Meet Racton Man

    Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
    Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

    Garden Bridge

    St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
    Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

    Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

    An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
    Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

    Joint Enterprise

    The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
    Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

    Freud and Eros

    Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum