Friday 26 November 2010

Do you come from a land down under?

This photograph is titled: "Stop going to Waitrose to buy dinner you arse".

It follows a distinctive pattern. Plan to stay in to save some money. Head to Waitrose intending only to buy 'reduced' items. It always starts off well, then with equal certainty, rapidly descends into farce. Half price monkfish, tick, 30% reduced wine, so cheap I'll buy two, a few accompaniments (the bill suddenly rockets as this includes unpasteurised cheeses and all other kinds of nonce nonsense) and then I spotted these chaps.

So alive they were moving their little sign around... "New Zealand Clams £10.99kg". I've been awaiting their appearance in Glasgow's malnourished Waitrose for some time. Yes, I am that sad. They caused a flood of mixed emotions when spotted in the Monmouth store last summer. Wonder that live clams, from the other side of the world, could be sold in Wales, a triumph of human ingenuity. Yet simultaneously a rush of profound disappointment that we were actually doing so. These shores are crawling with wonderful shellfish, why the hell are we flying clams first class across the globe? Then I tasted them. And that's why food love costs so dear.

Tonight they went with some half price Monkfish. A few years back a guy on the fish stall in another Waitrose told me they only ever keep fresh fish three days and the stuff they buy in the first place is spanking. So to this day it's the only place I'll buy reduced price fish.

Cooked with shallot, garlic, flat leaf parsley, olive oil, butter and white wine. The clams and the juices were immense. The monkfish dry with that odd watery texture fish gets when it's been badly frozen. First time I've been seriously disappointed with Waitrose fish.

Anyway, seemed appropriate to drink a Kiwi white with a Kiwi clam. The reduced price Wither Hills Sauvignon Blanc was tasty. Better as it warmed up too. Great value at £8.99 so a steal at £5.99. Drunk while playing the clams final request before getting steamed... they got a glass of it too. At least, I think this is the song they were asking for, clams are terrible mumblers.


  1. Dude, you gotta just go down under. Cause then you can get 'em at the beach for free. (:

  2. Saw this and thought of you...