Thursday, 25 November 2010

Have some madeira m´dear

a favourite dessert tipple at Casa Rosada
"Last year I was given a decanter for Christmas, very nice thing, cut glass, came from the Portobello Road. I keep Madeira in it, a wine of which I am particularly fond, to the despair of the port wine trade". Flanders and Swann said it but no doubt Armstrong and Miller will revive it.
Their foul-mouthed Flanders and Swann spoof, Brabbins and Fyffe,  sing of sordid goings-on with a quavering innocence.This could be right up their street, maybe the Christmas special - watch this space.

'Have some Madeira, m'dear!
You really have nothing to fear;
I'm not trying to tempt you-that wouldn't be right.
You shouldn't drink spirits at this time of night;
Have some Madeira, m'dear!
It's very much nicer than Beer;
I don't care for Sherry, one cannot drink Stout,
And Port is a wine I can well do without;
It's simply a case of Chacun a son GOUT!
Have some Madeira, m'dear!'

Like port, it can be drunk as a dessert wine or in its dry styles such as Sercial,instead of a sherry before dinner.My father used to regale me with a story about a glass of Madeira and a biscuit at eleven in the morning with his bank manager at Glyn Mills & Co. I personally have never had such an enlightened bank manager, or if I did I was never aware. I did not fall into the category of customers to whom bank mangers proffered glasses of Madeira. However having said that, a glass of Madeira Meio doce with a dry Maria biscuit ( more of that story later Kirsty ) either mid morning or late afternoon could become a very happy institution.
I think it is a much forgotten and underrated tipple. Delicious whether dry or sweet, very agreeable to the palate, never harsh and has a flavour all of its own. It is also very comforting to the stomach, or at least to mine.
Our chosen label here at Casa Rosada is Henriques and Henriques, makers of the aperitif Ribeiro Seco.All in all the perfect accompaniment to Algarve fine dining.
 ....Have some madeira, m'dear, the words seemed to ring in her ear
Until the next morning, she woke up in bed
With a smile on her lips and an ache in her head
And a beard in her ear 'ole that tickled and said
Have some madeira, m'dear

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