Palate Pleasures: Summertime Haze…

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And here we are once again – endless summer days, beaches, pools, barbecues, sunburn and mozzies. Lots of socialising, afternoon snoozes, sore heads in the morning …

We wish! Although I still seem to occasion that sore head in the morning, the other summer pursuits seem rather thin on the ground for those who find themselves in the hospitality industry in a coastal tourist Mecca such as ours.

As soon as November rolls into December, things start to go bonkers for us – Christmas parties, family catch ups, last ditch drinks with friends before the ‘D Day’ of Christmas.

Then of course, there’s the merriment associated with seeing in the New Year, and that seems to continue on through that first hazy week in January.

All of it involves a celebratory tipple or two, sometimes more. Beers at lunchtime, a crisp, dry and cold white. Don’t forget that archetypal summertime beverage, the gin and tonic, replete with loads of ice, generous wedges of squeezed lime. Mmm … I can almost taste it! While we’re on the subject, what about those ubiquitous summery cocktails – most of them rum based – the mojito, the pina colada, the mai tai. Or perhaps a sour and salty margarita is your thing, or a frozen daiquiri?

Sorry, I seem to have gotten carried away here. There’s just something about the festive joy of time off work combined with long, hot summer days that leads to the imbibing of various chilled alcoholic beverages. Nothing tastes as good as a cocktail by the pool, or an ice-cold beer on a hot afternoon.

Well … I suppose there’s a reason why they call it the silly season!

When it comes down to it though, we hospitality types relish this hedonistic atmosphere. More than any other time in the year we know that you will be ordering that second cocktail, third bottle of wine and might feel inclined to splash out on some French bubbles!

We love it when you tell us you’ve left the car at home … After all, we’re here to help you celebrate!

Now, before you go and report me to some health authority for the relentless pushing of beverages which may damage your health, I will say that I do hold true to the tried and tested maxim of ‘everything in moderation’. If you don’t go too crazy on the silly stuff today, you’ll still be in good enough shape to do it all again tomorrow!

Hmm, although – what time is it? Cocktail hour mustn’t be too far away … all this talk is making me thirsty. Over December and January I’ll mostly be living vicariously through our wonderful customers, but come February – hand me that G and T!

In the meantime, hoping that everyone had a fantastic Christmas and New Year and managed to relax, and indulge a little, or a lot!

This article can be found in issue 86 of Greater Port Macquarie Focus

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