Album: Beethoven, Piano Sonatas opus 109,110,111 – Alexei Lubimov (Zig Zag Territoires)

Lubimov's peerless recording of Schubert's Impromptus contrasted the timbres of two period keyboards.

A Dish of Tea with Dr Johnson, Dr Johnson's House, London

For this particular stop on its nation-wide tour, A Dish of Tea with Dr Johnson – an evening of pure, civilised delight, directed by Max Stafford-Clark for his Out of Joint Company – becomes seriously site-specific. The audience is seated up in the attic of the beautiful Georgian house in Gough Square (off Fleet Street) where the great man of letters lived while compiling his monumental Dictionary.

Ride, Rise, Roar (12A)

Odd how one's tastes change. Back in 1980 I recall my utter delight on first hearing the Talking Heads' fourth, career-changing album, Remain in Light.

The 10 best Christmas hamper treats

Create this season’s finest festive foodie present with your own specially chosen box of delicacies from around the world

Give us today our deli bread: The pioneers who answered our artisanal prayers

Organic fruit and veg, artisan breads and cheeses, 'fancy' foreign delicacies... Today, we take it all for granted. But, says Peter Stanford, if not for these pioneering deli owners, we'd still be eating rubbery cheddar

Minor British Institutions: Bara Brith

The easiest, but incorrect, way to describe Bara Brith is as a Welsh version of Dundee Cake. But it is a lot, lot less rich and fruity than its Scottish counterpart, and is not really a cake as such, but bread.

Album: De Visée / Couperin etc, The Nightingale...(Linn)

Strikingly different in style to Maurice Steger's sequinned brilliance, recorder virtuoso Pamela Thorby's soft, sweet, natural tone is ideally suited to the whimsical delicacies of d'Hervelois, Philidor and Dieupart.

Album: Pascal Roge, Poètes du Piano (Onyx)

Poètes du Piano is the perfect description for this beautifully sequenced selection of Romantic piano pieces, a series of exquisite miniatures by the likes of Chopin, Ravel, Fauré and Poulenc, in which delicacy and brevity are prized over the more prosaic charms of full-scale works.

The world's weirdest dining experiences

Once upon a time it was enough that restaurants served up mouth-watering delicacies. But as the number of restaurants grows, establishments are seeking ever more unusual ways to draw in the punters and differentiate themselves from the competition.

Nick Foulkes: Lakeland, mecca of gadgetry, is Britain's spiritual home

The other day a four-and-a-half-inch high plastic lemon appeared in our fridge. I asked my wife what it was doing there. "Oh that," she replied. "Lucy thought it would be useful for storing the lemon halves you don't use." Lucy has a habit of supplying us with solutions to problems that we did not know we had.

Caprice's new eatery for Mayfair hedgies

A taste from each of Caprice-owner Richard Caring's poshest restaurants – the chocolate cake from Annabel's or grissini and polpetta from Harry's Bar – will be on sale to the public when he opens his new Mount Street Deli on Wednesday.

India's new delicacy: a 45-day-old tomato

In a country where so many people go hungry, it is a dark irony that up to 30 per cent of the fruit and vegetables grown in India goes bad before reaching the market thanks to a combination of bad roads and a lack of refrigerated trucks.

Album: Ludovico Einaudi, Nightbook (Decca)

Ludovico Einaudi occupies the often disparaged space that used to be the preserve of new-age music, situated midway between classical music's studied restraint and pop's eager melodicism.

Album: Katia et Marielle Labèque, Erik Satie (KML)

The Labèque sisters here offer a blend of Satie's work for both two and four hands, with the solo pieces divvied up according to compatability.

Album: Charlie Dore, The Hula Valley Songbook, (Black Ink)

The likeable English songwriter does what all English songwriters are obliged to do one day: an album of favourite American songs.

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Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there