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A liver transplant patient turned up to her operation appointment at a German hospital with a bottle of vodka in her bag, a court has heard.

Father 'drank vodka before causing baby son's death'

A 34-year-old man drank a bottle of vodka before causing the death of his 10-week-old son by inflicting severe injuries to his head, a court heard today.

Still playing the rebel: Nigel Kennedy is back and he's showing no signs of mellowing

Nigel Kennedy returns for a gig at London's Tower Festival as his seminal Vivaldi album gets a 20th anniversary re-release. He still has the haircut, the attitude, and he's still angry – about conductors, the price of CDs, Palestine, country music, Margaret Thatcher, and much more. Jessica Duchen met him, and then partied...

Man 'injected vodka for thrill' says murder accused

A gay con artist accused of murdering his partner said he had started looking at suicide websites and injecting vodka for a "thrill" before he died.

Dom Joly: The more gaffes on television, the better the show

I was doing a Radio 2 panel show last week and we had a heckler. Well, to be fair it wasn't exactly heckling, more mumbling. It all started really quietly, when the comic Robin Ince was going on about Jordan and Peter Andre. There were mutterings from the back of the crowd about how he ought to "leave Jordan alone". It was said so quietly that Ince pretty much ignored it. Then the voice asked him to "leave Peter Andre alone".

A tale of two cities: How do you sample St Petersburg and Moscow in one weekend? Plenty of caviar, blinis and vodka...

it was long past midnight on the train to Moscow and, as the suburbs of St Petersburg receded, the darkened landscape rushed by in a blur. In the restaurant carriage, where a few passengers remained, I was being scolded by a local acquaintance. I'd been stirring my Bloody Mary, you see, and this is not the done thing in Russia, where vodka must be savoured in as unadulterated a way as possible, even when mixed into a tumbler of tomato juice. White Russians are always served double by their namesakes. Order a glass of the house white here and you'll get a disdainful, "what a wuss" stare from your waiter. Luckily, I hadn't got around to asking for the Worcestershire sauce just yet.

Premium vodkas become cult hit

Premium and super-premium vodkas marketed on their heritage, provenance and style have become a cult hit with brand-conscious drinkers, at up £140 a litre.

The President's Last Love, By Andrey Kurkov

It's the year 2013 and Bunin, the Ukranian president, has joined other heads of state in an open-air swimming pool to drink vodka and celebrate Putin's legacy.

Tim Walker: 'There's no cold front from Russia when it comes to hosting beauty pageants'

"Russian males enthusiastically celebrate the existence of their womenfolk"

Derek Pain: Turn to drinking to ride out economic woes

No Pain, No Gain

Man jailed for vodka fire attack

A 19-year-old man who threw vodka in the face of a teenage girl before setting light to her was jailed indefinitely today.

<a href="http://blogs.independent.co.uk/independent/2008/11/busted-at-the-b.html">Asian (con)Fusion: Busted at the border</a>

A couple of weeks ago I was crossing the border to Pakistan bearing, as a gift for a friend, a bottle of vodka.

The Weasel: Currant affairs

Putting weather on one side, it's the little things you miss when you switch from taking les grandes vacances in Charente-Maritime to having your hols in Filey, North Yorks. By little things, I mean, of course, comestibles. Over the decade that we've been coming to the Yorkshire coast, it has become increasingly possible to persuade one's palate that it is on the Ile de Ré. The sourdough bread from Driffield farmers' market could not be matched at most boulangeries and the same goes for the butter croissants from our village Co-op. It is even possible to get rillettes de porc from the Ginger Pig butchers in Pickering, though the French would find both price and texture on the stiff side. But certain items remain elusive.

Love and Other Demons, Glyndebourne Festival Opera, Sussex<br/>Proms (34), Royal Albert Hall, London <br/>Proms (37), Royal Albert Hall, London

Never mind the zombies, listen to the singing as Eötvös's icy composition meets tropical heat in his exquisitely crafted fifth opera

Grapefruit Julep

Serves 4

Miles Kington Remembered: Dietary supplements that work ... or I'll eat my own words

The slower we eat, the less food we ingest. Simple as that. With my system you can eat as much as you like &ndash; or could, if only you had the time for it
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy
UK heatwave: Temperature reaches 39.8 degrees on Central Line - the sweatiest place in London

39.8 degrees recorded on Tube

There's hot (London) and too damn hot (the Underground). Simon Usborne braved the Central line to discover what its passengers suffer
Kitchens go hi-tech: From robot chefs to recipe-shopping apps, computerised cooking is coming

Computerised cooking is coming

From apps that automatically make shopping lists from your recipe books to smart ovens and robot chefs, Kevin Maney rounds up innovations to make your mouth water
Jessie Cave interview: The Harry Potter star has published a feminist collection of cartoons

Jessie Cave's feminist cartoons

The Harry Potter star tells Alice Jones how a one-night stand changed her life
Football Beyond Borders: Even the most distruptive pupils score at homework club

Education: Football Beyond Borders

Add football to an after-school homework club, and even the naughtiest boys can score
10 best barbecue books

Fire up the barbie: 10 best barbecue books

We've got Bibles to get you grilling and smoking like a true south American pro
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power
Ron Dennis exclusive: ‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

Ron Dennis shrugs off a poor start to the season in an exclusive interview, and says the glory days will come back
Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most