Saturday 12 April 2014

Drinking in the open air

Back in 1998 I was a columnist in GQ on the joys of living in the countryside, which was more Withnail than a man standing in a hedge with a pair of bins in his hand. This was my first one, which was all about the joys of getting drunk in the open air — note the mention of Old Freddy Walker, which was one of my favourite tipples then (and the old bloke after whom the beer was named was still alive then). I went onto write about sex in the countryside, selling cider to hippies going to Glastonbury and shooting at (but not hitting) wild ducks. It was great fun and I even got commissioned by then editor James Brown to write 3000 words on West Country cider, which set me off writing about cider for about 12 years until I got bored with it (that makes me feel like the man who turned down the Beatles). Anyway I thought it would be fun to put the column up as this was all done when magazines were strictly binary (or whatever the word is).


  1. The States are finally getting around to drinking cider. I suppose you've given up cider forever, but, if not, do you have any favorite American ciders?

  2. I’m afraid I don’t but I did try Ace Cider in Gijon in 2008 at some cider symposium I was invited to, while I was flummoxed by a sign for cider doughnuts whilst on a beer hunting piece in Vermont in 2010 — I hadn’t realised the difference between cider and hard cider.