The cat collector or Kat-a-log part 11

Welcome to the special edition of Kat-a-log!

We have kicked off February with a special issue of Olympia’s project dedicated to the Chinese New Year. Now, on the last day of the shortest month of the year, we thought it would be kind of cool to finish with yet another special edition. This time, Kat-a-log cats have been taken outside and photographed while playing in a snow. Let’s say good bye to winter in a true wintery fashion: with lots of snow, cold, frost and an eerie atmosphere of a white desert. Those of you who own white cats will probably find this issue to be hilarious; the rest will undoubtedly have troubles spotting a cat in the middle of a snow storm!

If you have missed the previous editions of Kat-a-log, please click on the following links to see all the cats featured on our blog so far. The list is getting longer but the collection is huge! Have fun browsing through the entries and don’t forget to let us know which cat is your favourite one!

Kat-a-log Part 1: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/08/27/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-1
Kat-a-log Part 2: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/09/07/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-2/
Kat-a-log Part 3: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/09/10/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-3/
Kat-a-log Part 4: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/11/14/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-4/
Kat-a-log Part 5: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/11/16/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-5/
Kat-a-log Part 6: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/12/03/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-6/
Kat-a-log Part 7: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/12/19/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-7/
Kat-a-log Part 8: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2013/01/02/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-8/
Kat-a-log Part 9: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2013/01/06/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-9/
Kat-a-log Part 10https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2013/02/14/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-10/

The winter edition of Cats Illustrated (aka Kat-a-log) will introduce you to four green and white coloured new kittens. Please take a look!

Kat-a-log Feline no. 39
Three sides of a cat: Won’t come sown, Arctic cat and Don’t come close
Country of origin:
Bytom, Poland, bought as a gift in early 2000

The white beauty you see on pictures below looks like a miniature version of our mom’s real cat named Salem, when she is scared.  Salem is a very talented drama actress specializing in crawling, creeping, heavy panting (hyperventilation) and general slow-motion panic when it rains or during the thunderstorm. We have spotted the figurine in art store in the city of Bytom and decided to buy it to make Olympia laugh. The cat has been standing on the top of the kitchen cabinet since the early 2000 and is one of the earliest figures in the collection.  In January, Rita has taken the kitten out for a walk over the frozen fields to show everybody that even a clay figure can look like a real creature!

Won't come down

Won’t come down

Arctic cat

Arctic cat

Don't come close

Don’t come close

Kat-a-log Feline no. 40
Three sides of a cat: Winter hibernation, Splash of green and Monument and a cat
Country of origin:
Wroclaw, Poland bought as a gift in 2009

In 2009, Rita has left her home town of Katowice and moved to Wroclaw for work. Settling in a new place is not always easy, but is much easier when you have a cat with you.  Green and white porcelain figurine has been bought in one of the biggest Wroclaw kitchenware stores in the city centre and Rita remembers it to be extremely expensive! It represents a very popular type of Polish kitchen decorations and is hand painted. The photo session has been taken on a frozen statue of a lion on Bytom’s main plaza (known to the locals as the Red Square) in January 2013.

Winter hibernation

Winter hibernation

Splash of green

Splash of green

Monument and a cat

Monument and a cat

Kat-a-log Feline no. 41
Three sides of a cat: Perfect camouflage, Walk in the woods and I am shocked
Country of origin:
Dusseldorf (airport), bought on November 30, 2008

On November 30, 2008 Malicia has been travelling from Malta to Poland for CameraImage Film Festival. She had a brief (4 hours – Thank you Lufthansa!) stop over in Dusseldorf. The airport there was very small and you could walk it all over in 30 minutes, so in the end Mal was bored and retreated to Starbucks for a cup of hot chocolate. Right next to her table, there was a small glass cabinet showcasing items from a next door souvenir shop. One look at it and Mal knew she found a right gift for mom – a cat figurine. This is another scared looking kitten in Olympia’s collection. When handing it in, Mal joked that if painted black, it would be a Salem garage kit (action figure if you are not familiar with gaming terminology). Unfortunately, Mal does not remember the name of the souvenir shop, so we can only link you to the website of the airport itself: http://www.duesseldorf-international.de/dus_en/

Remind Mal that one day she should share some of her horror encounters with Lufthansa – you will be looking just like this little white coward-cat…

Perfect camouflage

Perfect camouflage

Walk in the woods

Walk in the woods

I am shocked

I am shocked

Kat-a-log Feline no. 42
Three sides of a cat: White pebbles, Ideal symmetry and Cat cameleon
Country of origin:
Paris, France, bought in 9 July, 2009

This green handmade cat with strange whiskers is a native of France. It was bought during company trip to Paris in July 2009, very close to Champs-Élysées at an artisan/ antique shop. Mal has some photos from that shop but none that would show the name of it. So apologies, you have to believe her by the word. It was originally found by a colleague named Melanie, who was with Mal on that day. It’s very unique and has come with a tag price of 15 EUR as far as we remember. We have a tradition of bringing a cat figurine even from short trips. This one was only three days long but it was worth it anyway!

If you want to learn more about the heart of Paris, you may want to see this link: http://www.champselysees.org/

White pebbles

White pebbles

Ideal symmetry

Ideal symmetry

Cat cameleon

Cat cameleon

We hope that you have enjoyed our winter wonderland full of cats! Our next Kat-a-log issue will take us to the kitchen, where we will look through all cupboards and kitchen units in search of felines hidden there! Did we ever mention that Olympia has a nice collection of tea mugs? Yes, you guess correctly! There is a cat on each one of them!

Be warm and remember to hiss at the snow!
xxxx

Olympia + Rita & Mal

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The Wondrous Worcester Victorian Christmas Fayre

Heya people!

So far, we have written mostly about Hereford and Malta on our blog. It is because Malicia resides on the lovely island in the Mediterranean and Rita is freezing her rear in West Midlands. Sometimes however, we are travelling to other locations to see how things are being done elsewhere. On 1st of December 2012, Rita went to Worcester to witness the famed Victorian Christmas Fayre.  It was the first time ever she went to Victorian market and she found it to be a memorable experience. No offence meant, but the market in Worcester was bigger than anything Rita has seen yet in Hereford. The crowd of 34.000 people during the Flavour of Herefordshire festival looked really modest in comparison to 120.000 visitors at the annual Christmas extravaganza. We had only two words to describe the mad mob running up and down the main shopping streets of Worcester City Centre and they were “HOLY HELL!”

Official logo of Worcester Victorian Christmas Fayre 2012

Official logo of Worcester Victorian Christmas Fayre 2012

2012 edition of the Worcester Victorian Christmas Fayre was in fact its 20th. The celebration started on Thursday 29th November and ended with a big party on Sunday 2nd December 2012.
Opening times were:  Thursday 29th of November  16:00 PM – 21:00 PM (openning day),
Friday 30th of November 11:00 AM – 21:00 PM,  Saturday 1st of December 10:00 AM – 20:00 PM and
Sunday 2nd of December 11:00 AM – 17:00 PM

If you’d like to know more about the festival, please click on the floowing links:

Official Visit Worcester website –
 http://www.visitworcester.com
Official Facebook page –  www.facebook.com/worcesterfayre
PDF version of the Christmas flayerhttp://www.modushosting.co.uk/chr12tmas/flip-book-2/
PDF version of The Worcester Christmas Magazinehttp://www.modushosting.co.uk/chr12tmas/flip-book/#/16/
PFD version of the Business Directory for Worcesterhttp://www.modushosting.co.uk/chr12tmas/bid-businesses/
Official Victorian Christmas Fayre programmehttp://www.visitworcester.com/img/2012_Fayre_Programme.pdf

Worcester Victorian Market leaflet distributed during the festivities

Worcester Victorian Market leaflet distributed during the festivities

Victorian Christmas Fayre is being described as one of the biggest Victorian Christmas markets in the UK. For those of our readers who like math and statistics, here are some numbers that could help you to imagine how enormous this event was. In 2012, there were 150 independent stalls owned by local artists, craft makers, various family businesses, butchers, breweries, bakers and cooks. Additional 50 stands were housed within the historic buildings of Worcester Guildhall. The great Assembly Room (previously a ballroom!) has been turned into open cafeteria for more than 150 guests and visitors. The entertainment has been provided by 90 performances from local schools, choirs, dance troupes, community groups and professional Victorian themed stilt walkers. If we add volunteers, council workers, bus companies (who coordinated transportation of visitors), charities, emergency workers and locals dressed in self-made costumes, we can estimate than nearly 1000 people were directly involved in organization. Very impressive number, don’t you think?

As  usual, we have chosen several stands, that we thought are worth writing about. It would be great to mention all the artists and makers but you’d be bored to death reading about all of them! We have selected the most important ones, in our humble opinion of course. Please take a look at the best of the best from Worcester Christmas Fayre.

Silver Del Sol – contemporary sterling silver
Website: http://www.silverdelsol.com

Address:
 31 Wayne Avenue,  Cranford, Middlesex (please contact Clare Fowler on 07900 878118)

Silver Del Sol (Silver Sun) is a young and dynamic fair trade company introducing East Asian creators to Western customers. They produce sterling silver jewellery mixed with shells, semi-precious stones and fossils. Each piece is handmade and polished in a special way to enhance the natural beauty of the used materials. Clare Fowler, the lady seen on the picture below, was very kind and explained in detail how the jewellery pieces are made in Bali and then shipped to UK and the rest of Europe. Silver Del Sol not only sell through their website but also delivers their products to jewellery stores and hi street traders. You have probably seen Silver Del Sol’s items in many stores and didn’t realize that you can buy them straight from the makers. As they say, cut out the middle man and support the artists!

Fabulous jewellery from Silver Del Sol

Fabulous jewellery from Silver Del Sol

Le Vésinet – A French connection
Website: http://www.levesinet.fr/

Address:
16 km from the centre of Paris!

It was very surprising to hear a French accent and chants “les crêpes!” (“pancakes!”) in the middle of Victorian market. When we went to investigate, we found a large stall with French delegation from a town of Le Vésinet. Worcester and Le Vésinet have been twinned in 1994 and grew very close since then. Twice a year, a delegation from Worcester travels to Le Vésinet to participate in art and holiday market. In return, the French are invited to summer celebrations and Victorian market. Le Vésinet is known as ville-parc (a suburban park) and has many gardens, public parks and mansions worth visiting. It is located only 16 km from the city centre of Paris and is a must see for every tourist coming to the French capitol. We have not only tried their wonderful pancakes but also bought an original French cream from roasted eatable chestnuts.

Guests from French town of Le Vésinet at their stall, serving the traditional French pancakes to freezing visitors

Guests from French town of Le Vésinet at their stall, serving the traditional French pancakes to freezing visitors

The official banner advertising the international link between Worcester and Le Vésinet

The official banner advertising the international link between Worcester and Le Vésinet

Odd Bod Bears – friends made from tea and bathing towels
Website: none
Address: Cheltenham, please ask for Mrs Viner at 01242 242117

It is a big, big shame, that we couldn’t find more information about Odd Bod Bears company on the internet. It is a single person business and the owner doesn’t have an official website. What’s more important, Mrs Viner has extraordinary skills. She can make any toy just from a piece of fabric, several pieces of strings and few buttons. Her stall was placed inside the Guild’s Hall building on the ground floor and attracted quite a crowd. The pictures we took don’t do her creation any justice! All toys have been made from tea towels and bathing towels. They have been cleverly folded and stitched together to resemble wild animals: bears, crocodiles, frogs, tigers, elephants, owls and many more (no cats unfortunately!). Each animal cost only 10 pounds and none were the same.

Odd Bod Bears stand in the Guild's Hall building

Odd Bod Bears stand in the Guild’s Hall building

Mrs Viner at the Odd Bod Bears

Mrs Viner at the Odd Bod Bears

Thai Interiors – East meets West
Website: http://www.thai-interiors.com
Address: Please contact Emma or Sanan at 07747607079

If you are a follower of Kat-a-log project on our blog, you are probably familiar with the name Thai Interiors. We have written about them in December when one of their sculptures joined Olympia’s collection. Thai Interiors is a fair trade company run by British volunteers who help the Thai artists earn an extra income for their arts and crafts. Emma, the director of the organization, travels to Thailand several times a year and brings the hand-made sculptures with her to the UK. They are then sold on local markets all over the country and all money collected are given back to the artists. Sculptures presented in the Guild’s Hall in Worcester were made entirely from the horns of water buffalos. Each piece has been polished and carved multiple times to receive their characteristic deep amber-coloured shading.

Please see the cat that we have bought during the market: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/12/19/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-7/

Emma among the thai Interiors sculptures

Emma among the thai Interiors sculptures

Thai Interior's stand was one of the biggest on the market

Thai Interior’s stand was one of the biggest on the market

Closer look at the hand name sculptures

Closer look at the hand name sculptures

Emma was a very kind person and she even borrowed her Victorian mob cap to Rita. Isn’t she pretty?

Victorian Rita!

Victorian Rita!

Coningsby – original paintings, prints and commissions
Website: www.sandstonebones.co.uk – in preparation
Address: please contact Sophia at 07971215734

The main lady behind Coningsby art project is a rare talent. Sophia’s skills with watercolours, ink, acrylics and mixed media are so breath-taking that they made complete strangers stop rushing about and look at her artworks with amazement. We also fell under the spell, but we had to admit, we have nothing against being bewitched with art! Sophia is incredibly funny person and held very interesting conversations with her guests. She could discuss recent politics, Victorian fashion, Worcester history and her paintings at once with such ease that we spent nearly half an hour at her stand without even realizing it. Coningsby official website is in preparation so please come back soon.

Sophia and her partner in crime posing for a picture

Sophia and her partner in crime posing for a picture

Framed artwork available for sale

Framed artwork available for sale

Wooden guns at Coningsby stand - you can now be James Bond as well!

Wooden guns at Coningsby stand – you can now be James Bond as well!

BlueBird Tea Co – tea for thought or thoughts about tea
Website: http://www.bluebirdteaco.com/
More information: http://www.facebook.com/BluebirdTeaCo

Founded in July 2012, Bluebird Tea Co. is a fantastic example that sometimes you don’t have to look for a job, but you can create one for yourself. Kristina Smith and Mike Turner met at the university and quickly discovered that 9-to-5-corporate-job is not for them. An idea for their own business was born during their trip to Canada and after returning to the UK, BlueBird Tea Co has been born. They describe themselves as ”fairly young, happiness-spreading, tea-making, independent, caring, exciting and unique little company on a mission to make people happy with tea”. We have met Mark at their stand at Christmas Fayre where he convinced us to try “Nearly Nirvana” – one of their special green-white tea mixes. The tea has been delivered to Poland in January and Olympia described it as “kick ass”. Now, this is for you our British readers. Don’t panic, order from Bluebird and keep drinking tea. The Queen would like you to!

Bluebird Tea Co. at their stand

Bluebird Tea Co. at their stand

Honorable mentions:

Aunt Annie’s Traditional Confectionary
Website: none

A very well known, local sweets producer, Aunt Annie’s Traditional Confectionary, has been in business since 1966. The company is always present at the Christmas Fayres and some people say the festive season would be called off without them. Their stand was one of the biggest but their selection of sweets and fudges is simply huge. The fudges where given funny names like “Death by chocolate”, “Red bull Fudge”, “Marzipan madness” and “Pizza pie”. We couldn’t buy anything as the queue was longer than all episodes of “All my children” and” Coronation street” combined together. Instead, we took several pictures for your enjoyment.

Death by chocolate fudge and  sweet pizza - everything you ever dreamed of!

Death by chocolate fudge and sweet pizza – everything you ever dreamed of!

Closer look at their fudge and sweets selection

Closer look at their fudge and sweets selection

Santa Claus
Address: North Pole (of course) and Worcester (during the fayre)

One of the Christmas Fayre’s actors was dressed in Santa Claus’ outfit. You should have seen the kids’ faces when they saw him! The gentleman had the loudest “ho, ho, ho” we heard this year and he worked really hard. Santa agreed to pose for a picture after Rita promised to be a very good girl next year.

Victorian Santa

Victorian Santa

The High Town orchestra
Location: in the front of Guild Hall building, High Street

A small orchestra played an hour long concert for the visitors in the front of Guild Hall offices. They played the most popular songs from the Victorian Era but also added several public favourites: “With a little help from my friends” The Beatles, “Walking in the air”, ”Wonderwall” Oasis, ”We will rock you” Queen and several others. The crowd cheered and danced and we had a lot of fun singing out loud. There is nothing better than a group karaoke!

A night time concert in the front of Guild Hall building

A night time concert in the front of Guild Hall building

Orchestra playing the most famous Victorian tunes

Orchestra playing the most famous Victorian tunes

All right kids! Hope you have enjoyed this long, but detailed review of the Worcester Victorian Christmas Fayre. We will definitely be back next year, maybe during the day to see the difference between the night market and daily celebration. Please return soon as we are having a rare treat to fantasy and book lovers. The coming up entries will be dedicated to Jasper Fforde and Helen Stringer!

See you next week,
xxxxx
Rita and Mal D.

                    

The cat collector or Kat-a-log part 10

It’s February…Happy New Year!

We had two kitty-licious entries since New Year in Kat-a-log. But you know, celebrations never get old so we decided to do it all over again! Before you think we had too much catnip, we would like to explain. This time around we will celebrate Lunar New Year or Chinese Year of The Snake of the water element.

Year of the Snake is not seen as a very lucky in the East, unless you have been born in the Year of the Monkey. According to Chinese Zodiac, Monkey is the only heavenly animal that can handle a Snake, so when everybody is treated to an average year, Monkey is having a ball.  Please note that Chinese don’t have the idea of bad luck like we have in the West. Snake is a relative of Dragon, but is not as powerful as his Great Cousin; his might come from ordinary, hard work, wit and adaptation. Snake is practical and secretive, often humorless. That’s why Snake welcomes an optimistic and cheerful Monkey as his companion.  This year, it is good to keep a good relation with a Monkey for advice, fresh approach and healthy perspective, if you feel like overworking yourself.

Both Rita and I are Goats (in the element of Earth), our dad is a Wood Horse and Matt is a Fire Ox. The only really lucky person in the household is our mom Olympia. She is a Fire Monkey. It’s been three days since the New Year (February 10th), and she already won in Super 5.  Told ya. Monkey is in preference this year.

If you have missed any of the previous issues of the Kat-a-log, you can access them easily by just clicking on the links below:

Kat-a-log Part 1: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/08/27/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-1
Kat-a-log Part 2: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/09/07/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-2/
Kat-a-log Part 3: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/09/10/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-3/
Kat-a-log Part 4: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/11/14/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-4/
Kat-a-log Part 5: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/11/16/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-5/
Kat-a-log Part 6: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/12/03/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-6/
Kat-a-log Part 7: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2012/12/19/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-7/
Kat-a-log Part 8: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2013/01/02/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-8/
Kat-a-log Part 9: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2013/01/06/the-cat-collector-or-kat-a-log-part-9/

Chinese New Year is a great opportunity for introducing readers of Kat-a-log to some Oriental beauties in Olympia`s collection. So scroll down and have a look!

Kat-a-log Feline no. 35
Original name: Daikini

Three sides of a cat: Evening yoga with Daikini, (Don’t forget to put some) Flowers in your hair and Fair trade.
Country of origin:  Unknown, probably Germany. Found in February, 2013.

We will start off with the newest member of the cat family – please meet Daikini. Named after Tibetan deity, this sporty feline is a true cat-in-a-bag success story. We have been on a bus one evening, sitting right next to a woman who loudly spoke on her cell phone. Bad manners aside, she complained that her colleagues at work presented her with a really ugly birthday gift. She was so displeased that she left the bag behind her when getting off the bus. The driver tried to catch up with her and was shouting at her that she left her items. She pretended not to hear him and disappeared into the night. We were kind of stunned but once we looked into the bad, we knew there was no way we would be parting with it. Unlike the mysterious lady, we definitely have good taste in presents. And Daikini is fantastic. Like true yogini, she’s simply stunning and makes a beautiful home décor. We took her for an evening yoga photo session and she is a born model as well! Some of her photos were taken is a fair trade shop – Why Not? which specializes in hand made things from India and Daikini fitted in right away. Mom was very pleased with our find and soon Daikini will be having a special place in her living room. We have tried to track her origins, but there was just a small label saying “Made in Germany” on the figurine. She’s a clay figurine and could be handmade.

If you want to visit Daikini`s favourite shopping place, go here: https://www.facebook.com/WhyNotNgo

Dont forget the flowers

(Don’t forget to put) Some flowers in your hair

Fair trade

Fair trade

Evening Yoga with Daikini

Evening Yoga with Daikini

Kat-a-log Feline no. 36
Original name:  Maneki-Neko

Three sides of a cat: All welcome, Eastern Aesthetics, Sakura sakura
Country of origin:  Fukuoka, Japan

Number 36 on our list but this original Japanese beauty was first-ever cat in Olympia`s collection. It was given to her in 1999 over Christmas, just before the new Millennium and the Year of Fire Dragon. This is a very powerful cat, having her usual spot in the kitchen as she likes to know what’s cooking.  Her home city is Fukuoka in Japan – world’s 12th largest and most populated city. You can say that she is the god-mother of all felines in the collection. Mom is extremely fond of this piece, not every visitor gets the privilege of being able to hold it. In the East, Maneki-Neko are treasured as good luck charms and invite customers into businesses.  Olympia prides herself on her open–house policy and she had hosted many visitors over the years. But you really know you are a friend of the family when being allowed to get closer to this gem of her collection.

You can learn more about Fukuoka here:  http://yokanavi.com/eg/index/index

Eastern aesthetics

Eastern aesthetics

All welcome

All welcome

Sakura, sakura

Sakura, sakura

Kat-a-log Feline no. 37
Three sides of a cat: The Shining, Oriental beauty, Ready for celebrations
Country of origin:  Beijing, China

This little gem of a cat figurine was hand crafted in Beijing and shipped to Malta in 2010 alongside with many other handicrafts. Malta is one of few European countries that have Chinese Cultural Centre (located in Valletta) and there is always something extraordinary happening for New Year. 2010 has seen a lively artisan market, alongside the usual parade. We have bought it from the artist himself (we know it is a crying shame we didn’t ask  for his name) and he was happy to inform us that this was his most popular design. He was not hiding that he made many of those figurines in his workshop, so it is perhaps not a unique piece but still – this kitty spent more time on a plane that we would ever wanted to!

You may want to visit ChineseCulturalCenter in Malta here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/China-Cultural-Centre-in-Malta/103008831806

Oriental beauty

Oriental beauty

The shining

The shining

Ready for celebration

Ready for celebration

Kat-a-log Feline no. 38
Three sides of a cat: Lucky charm, From the rooftop and Classical set up (for a cat)
Country of origin: China, given as a gift in 2010

This tiny porcelain creature known as jiu choi mao is the Chinese equivalent of Japanese maneki-neko. A lucky charm, he is raising his left paw inviting money and good luck to the household. It was given to Olympia as a present by Rita’s friend named Kate. It can be attached to a bracelet or a chain as it comes with a small hole drilled inside. This kitten is the smallest cat in Olympia’s collection and is being kept in a glass cabinet among the most valuable figurines. He is decorated with two hearts stuck together – a perfect ornament for the New Year and Valentine’s Day celebrations.

You can read more about Maneki neko here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maneki-neko

Lucky charm

Lucky charm

From the roof top

From the roof top

Classical set up (for a cat)

Classical set up (for a cat)

We hope that you had a lot of fun reading this entry. May the Year of The Snake treat you kindly! But if you are not fond of reptiles, you can always make 2013 The Year of The Cat.
And Happy Valentines to all our readers. Lots of love for everybody and a fish for the cats!

Here’s a tune for ya all:

All the best,
Mal/Rita/Olympia

The Flavours of Herefordshire Food Festival – 2011 edition photoblog

Hello, hello!

We would have never guessed that our review of Flavours of Herefordshire Festival 2012 was to be so popular! A big thank you to all our visitors for your comments, clicks and social media mentions (mostly on Facebook and Twitter). We are truly honoured and very happy that our hard work has been appreciated. You can expect a lengthy review of Festival in 2013 as well. If you have missed the review and you don’t know where to find it, please lick on the links below:

Part1: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2013/01/10/flavours-of-herefordshire-food-festival-part-1-farmers-market-in-high-town/

Part2: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2013/01/30/flavours-of-herefordshire-food-festival-part-2-cathedral-close-food-pavillions/

Tasty, fresh, local - the motto of Flavours of Herefordshire Food Festival A.D. 2011

Tasty, fresh, local – the motto of Flavours of Herefordshire Food Festival A.D. 2011

Culinary reviews seem to be very fashionable now. So to keep up with the trend, we have searched our deepest archives and discovered that we have never published the pictures from Flavours of Herefordshire 2011! What a great find indeed!

All pictures have been taken by Rita Dabrowicz durning the weekend of  22nd  and 23rd of October 2011 at Hereford Racecourse that sadly was closed this year after 100 years of fabulous service to the community. Malicia edited them to the highest standards and together, we decided to post them for your enjoyment. Dear audience: have a seat and take a look at the beautifully tasty photoblog.

THE PLACE: The festival has been organized on the grounds of Hereford Racecourse, nearly 2 miles away from the city centre. Day Tickets: Adults £7, under 14s £4, under 3s Free. Concessions (over 65) £6, disabled helpers Free. Family ticket (2 adults and up to 3 children) £22. 2 Day Tickets: Adults £12, Under 14s £6, Concessions £10, Family Ticket £38
High prices discouraged many visitors who left without paying.

The entrance to Hereford Race Course

The entrance to Hereford Race Course

Behind the fence of the Race Course in Hereford. Unfortunately, it's being turned into building project now

Behind the fence of the Race Course in Hereford. Unfortunately, it’s being turned into building project now

One of the towers at the Race course. We could climb to the top to have a great view!

One of the towers at the Race course. We could climb to the top to have a great view!

THE DINNER: Being at the food festival solves a lot of problems: you don’t have to worry about breakfast, brunch, lunch and the tea (aka the dessert anywhere else in the world outside of the UK). One stand advertised their meals as “burgers from different parts of the world” so we have decided to try oriental burger (chilli and pineapple) and Australian special. Yum.

Our meal being prepared

Our meal being prepared

Food has been served!

Food has been served!

Deserved lunch break

Deserved lunch break

THE PUBLIC: The food festival in 2011 was nearly as big as the one we reviewed in recent weeks, however the visitors were few compared to impressive 34 000 audience in 2012. It was a very sunny, but incredibly cold day and everybody looked for cover and warmth in exhibition tents or inside the Racecourse buildings. The wind was so strong; it nearly tore off the roof from one of the towers. However, the Herefordians are not easily scared and several brave people ate their lunches outside, trying to keep their burgers and salads in their hands.

Market decoration among the food pavilions

Market decoration among the food pavilions

A customer  ordering a burger from on of the local producers

A customer ordering burger from one of the local producers

THE EXHIBITORS: Nearly 70 local enterprises offered their products: organics, ecological fruits and vegetables, local preserves, fresh meat, drinks and sweets. Rita and Mal had picked their favourites but it was a very hard choice, as almost everything looked delicious. Please don’t hate us if you have been there but you didn’t make the list. Instead, leave us a comment and in 2013 we will pay you a visit! It is a fair deal, we think.

Frank’s Luxury Biscuits – http://www.franksluxurybiscuits.co.uk/
Address: Unit 12a, Holmer Trading Estate, Hereford
Family run business founded by Frank and Lesley Cornthwaite. We have bought a package of their oat cookies. Highly recommended if you have a sweet tooth but you are counting calories.

A colorful selection of healthy sweets

A colorful selection of healthy sweets

Richard C Swift Ltd – Swift Family Bakery – http://www.swifts.bakery.co.uk/
Address: High Street, Clee Hill Ludlow , Shropshire SY8 3LZ
The Swift family has been baking since the Victorian times and they received multiple awards for their traditional English and French bread. Their ciabatta buns are much better than the originals in Italy (we have checked!). You can buy straight from their central bakery located next to their store in Ludlow.

Bone shaped bread from Swift Bakery

Bone shaped bread from Swift Bakery

Nervous Nigel Foods – https://www.facebook.com/nervousnigelsfoods
Address: 33 Lady Park, Tenby, Pembrokshire,
Located in the beautiful Welsh town of Tenby (major tourist attraction), this small company is run by Chris and Bridget Cumming. They offer wide range of handmade condiments and sauces with a unique range of relishes, sauces, dressings and marinades. Horseradish mustard we bought at their stand was delicious but a bit too spicy for Rita.

Red banner at Nervous Nigel Foods' stand

Red banner at Nervous Nigel Foods’ stand

Orgasmic Cider Company – https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Orgasmic-Cider-Co/359278967448916
Address: Great Parton Farm, Eardisley, Herefordshire
Their unusual name made the food festival goers blush and giggle but The Orgasmic Cider Company are serious about their work. They produce traditional Herefordshire cider and perry using White Jersey, Brownsnout and Yarlington Mill apples grown in their 80 year old organic orchards. We washed down our burgers with a bottle of their finest cider and we were pleasantly surprised as we are not cider drinkers at all. OCC conqured the hearts of the judges as well and they won one of the main awards at the festival. Well brewed indeed!

Orgasmic Cider Company is part of the Cider Trail  sponsored by Cider Museum in Hereford.
http://www.ciderroute.co.uk/site/index.html
http://www.cidermuseum.co.uk/

Orgasmic Cider humorous banner attracting clients to their stand

Orgasmic Cider humorous banner attracting clients to their stand

Gwatkin Ciderhttp://www.gwatkincider.co.uk/home.html
Address: Moorhampton Park Farm, Abbey Dore
Founded in 1992, a small family business, Gwatkin Cider Co, makes one of the best ciders and perrys in Herefordshire. After purchasing a bottle of perry at the festival, we could not believe how flavoursome and rich it was. Denis Gwatkin and his relatives are extremely hard-working and humble individuals, ready to assist you at any point. And they make those beautiful cider jugs you can see on the picture below.

Very unusual stand of Gwatkin Cider

Very unusual stand of Gwatkin Cider

Popty Cara – http://www.poptycara.co.uk/
Address:  Home Farm, Lawrenny, Kilgetty, Pembrokeshire Wales
Daniel & Melanie Ives established Popty Cara in 1993. When they were not able to find good cakes in local stores, they decided to bake themselves. Fast forward 20 years and several prestigious awards later; Popty Cara is a thriving business delivering hand made sweets all over the UK. The owners keep no previously prepared stock – all cookies and cakes are freshly baked and delivered to customers. Herefordians are in a very fortunate position being close to Wales – we can get the cookies still hot! No, we are not bragging about it at all!

Handmade cakes from Popty Cara

Handmade cakes from Popty Cara

The Little Round Cake Company – http://www.thelittleroundcakecompany.co.uk/
Address: Unit 3 Pensfold Shopping Centre, Gains Park, Shrewsbury, Shropshire
The Little Round Cake Company was created by Brian Crowther in 2009, who dreamed of owning his own baking business since he was a child. With the help of his wife Leanne and a talented team of bakers, Brian turned his dream into a powerful business. Don’t worry, Brian didn’t forget his roots. His company is present at every food festival and farmers market in the county and you can even come to the HighTown and say hello to the man himself. We absolutely love the brand – we even have a special name for TLRCC . We call them the Kingdom of Sweet.

The Kingdom of sweet - Little Round Cake Company at the festival

The Kingdom of sweet – Little Round Cake Company at the festival

Court Farm and Leisure – http://www.courtfarmleisure.co.uk/
Address: Court Farm, Tillington, Herefordshire,
Court Farm and Leisure is a family run business in a small village of Tillington, just 3 miles outside of Hereford. The farm is not only an award winning producer of organic vegetables (Winner of Hereford food festival in 2008 and finalist of 2010 and 2011) but a small leisure centre as well. They also offer play area for kids, small zoo (animal farm sanctuary), fishing lake, mountain board centre (learning how to ride a mountain board), walking trail, picnic area, farm shop and a tea room. Wow – a whole package.

Court Farm Leisure and their stand at the  farmer's market during the festival

Court Farm Leisure and their stand at the farmer’s market during the festival

Customers picking organic vegetables from Court Farm Leisure stand

Customers picking organic vegetables from Court Farm Leisure stand

THE MISC – As usual, we have taken many pictures walking around the festival. We wouldn’t be ourselves if we didn’t want to share our favourite shots from the trip. And since this entry is called PHOTOBLOG, we feel excused to do so. So brace yourselves!

As the economic crisis ravages the European Union, politicians are becoming more and more acquitted with kitchen terms like “deep cuts” and “tightening the belt”. AMT Gastroguss prepared a great offer if they ever need to learn how to cook. Ladies and gentlemen, let us introduce a great alternative to all cuts and slashes!

Austerity measures in the kitchen

Austerity measures in the kitchen

You can buy half or a whole frying pan here: http://gastroguss.de/

Meet the food festival mascot, Mr Chicken.

Meet the food festival mascot, Mr Chicken.

Pralines stand - lots and lots of pralines. Is this heaven?

Pralines stand – lots and lots of pralines. Is this heaven?

Chocolate stand - anyone wants a chocolate skull?

Chocolate stand – anyone wants a chocolate skull?

Beautiful pottery - unfortunately we forgot whose stand it was

Beautiful pottery – unfortunately we forgot whose stand it was

THE END – we hope that you enjoyed this (belated) review of Flavours of Herefordshire Food Festival 2011.
We will see you soon, February entries are looking very promising so keep on returning.
For now, take care and have a snack!Love ya lots
XXX
Rita and Mal (one sandwich short of a picnic about good food!)