Herbs

Pastis Henri Bardouin

With the end of the Summer around the corner, at The Amazing Blog we've been enjoying the summer parties the French way with Pastis Henri Bardouin, 'le Grand Cru du Pastis'. It's the only pastis produced in Forcalquier, an area of Provence famous for its herbs and anise. At the beginning of the last century there were 10 distilleries in Forcalquier producing pastis, but only one remains today: Distillers et Domaines de Provence, an independent company founded in 1898 which is still produces the finest pastis named after its founder Henri Bardouin. Pastis Henri Bardouin is a complex of 50 natural Provencal herbs and imported spices rich in aroma and flavour such as: mugwort, bluebonnet, sage, star anise, cardamon, black and white pepper, tonka bean, grains of paradise, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. These spices and herbs are purchased directly from the growers surrounding the region or from specialist spice importers. Each ingredient of Pastis Herni Bardouin is individually infused in 96% alcohol to extract the aroma and flavour for 3 months. After that and in a month time, the blend takes place and the final result is bottled with a 45% of alcohol.

Pastis Henri Bardouin is recognised in France as the ultimate pastis, to be enjoyed as an aperitif or as a thirst-quenching drink mixed with water, which only requires one part of Pastis and 5 or 6 part of water. Pastis should be poured into a glass first and then add water from a jug containing ice - putting ice in the glass isn't recommended as it will kill the aromas of the pastis.

The taste of Pastis Henri Bardouin is intense and refreshing, the largest selling spirit drink in France, where over 6 million cases are consumed annually over vodka and whisky.

At The Amazing Blog we really enjoyed mixing Pastis Henri Bardouin with cola to make our own Mazout cocktail and enjoying it in the sun.

Pastis Henri Bardouin is available in Harrods, Waitrose and Independent Retailers at £20.75.

 

 

Fentiman's

On hot summer days, there's nothing better than sipping on a nice cold drink. Now, I know it's bad form to make generalisations, but I think I've found an exception to that rule. Fentimans has the most delicious range of (non-alcoholic) summer beverages. The Amazing Blog just can not get enough of their products, it's a mild obsession. These botanically brewed beverages (say that five times fast) are such a great alternative to the fizzy drinks from the corner shop. Even the bespoke bottles they come in are stylish. The method of botanically brewing is one of the things that sets Fentimans beverages apart from the rest. Through a mixture of roots and herbs, the beverages keep their natural and and tasty - the sedimentation which occurs from this process only serves to enhance all the flavours in the drinks and make sure that all the raw materials used in the process end up in the bottle. Fentimans have a great range of concoctions, including Curiosity Cola, Seville Orange Jigger, Ginger Beer, and Dandelion & Burdock. My personal favourite (it was a hard choice) is their Pink Lemonade, it's so cool and refreshing and absolutely perfect for a hot day. Fentimans have been making their carbonated beverages since 1905 and are still going strong to this day, once your try one of their drinks you'll understand why.

So grab yourself a few cool Fentimans this summer, you won't regret it! Fentimans is available online or at Waitrose, Sainsbury's and Tesco.

Urban Physic Garden

Everyone at Amazing PR loves a pop-up, so far this summer we have frequented Tom’s Terrace at Somerset House for an (almost) too-hot-to-handle chilli martini...or three. Headed to Southbank for traditional Indian street food and deliciously spiked coconuts at Dishoom’s Chowpatty Beach Bar and hit up Basil’s Beach Bar at The Goring for a taste of genuine Mustique glamour, sans airfare...and weather for that matter. But all this eating and drinking has taken it out of us a bit (I know, woe is us) and we feel something a little more alternative is in order.

Enter the Urban Physic Garden, which has burst into bloom on a neglected patch of land in South East London. Thanks to the work of a collective of designers, urban growers and over 150 eager volunteers the garden is now flourishing with medicinal plants and healing herbs. Taking inspiration from the Chelsea Physic Garden - a centre for plant-based healing, research and experimentation for over 300 years - the Urban Physic Garden aims to inform and inspire on this fascinating subject.

This summer the Urban Physic Garden welcomes all budding botanists and medical mavericks to their festival of talks, workshops, film screenings and events. The garden provides a platform for artists, designers, gardeners and health practitioners from a diverse range of backgrounds and cultures to showcase their talents. It is a place for lively debate – an outside space where a range of people can come together to explore the role of plants in science, health, well-being and the environment.

There is a fascinating programme of events coming up over the rest of the summer: Free lunchtime talks in the on-site ‘Rambulance Cafe’ (whose kitchen is a decommissioned ambulance), walks around the garden with Professor Peter Houghton an expert in medicinal plants, private consultations with a medical herbalist and creative workshops that cater to all ages.

The Urban Physic Garden is a work in progress. If you have some free time, and would like to get your hands dirty helping out, sign up to volunteer.

The Urban Physic Garden is open Tuesday-Sunday 11am – 6pm until 15th August. 100 Union Street, London SE1 0NL.