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Matthew Fort: The Curious Coffee Culture of Gibraltar

Gibraltar. The Rock. British Overseas Territory. Part shopping precinct, part mini-Las Vegas, part financial casbah, part communications listening-post, part stout corner of the empire. A bloody great piece of rock it is, too, a great hump towering above the sea looking out towards Morocco and Tunisia, with Spain hanging on by a narrow tail of land at the side. In the dim and distant past when Gibraltar was part of the Caliphate of Baghdad, it was known as Jabal Tariq - The Mount of Tariq - the anglicised version of which makes its name today. It became British as a result of the Treaty of Utrecht of 1713 and for a long time the docks were a shelter for the...

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pianocoffee.com is among the Great Taste winners of 2021

  We are delighted to announce that Francesco Coffee Beans from pianocoffee.com has been given an award by Great Taste, the largest and most trusted food and drink awards on the planet. Francesco will now be able to display the unmistakable black and gold logo, a stamp of excellence that is recognised by retailers and consumers alike.The Judges commended the good body of the coffee with its notes of dark chocolate and light citrus finish. This superb Organic, Fairtrade and Rainforest Alliance certified blend is now available in fully recyclable packaging (now including the coffee bag). Organic Fairtrade Rainforest Alliance Fully recyclable packaging Reduced Food Miles Francesco has been a labour of love to demonstrate our commitment to sustainability and...

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Caring for your coffee machine

Whether you are a business with a professional coffee machine or a home office worker with a sophisticated new piece of equipment in the kitchen, the chances are that you will need to call on a service agent at some point in the near future. Professional Espresso Machines If your professional machine has been out of use for some time, did you empty the boiler before closedown? If not, your machine will need to be drained and may need checking for scale build up. Other items, such as seals, would need to be checked at the same time and steam arms purged and cleaned. For professional machine servicing, please contact espressoservice.co.uk. Home Barista Machines Alternatively, you may have purchased a...

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Matthew Fort: Giving a fig

I discovered Sicily with my brother Tom in 1973 and fell in love. It struck me then, as it strikes me now, as the strangest, most exotic, most extraordinary place I’ve ever pottered over and round. It’s the only region I know where you live in 5,000 years of history every time you step outside. Many years after the initial reconnaissance with my brother, I decided to travel around Sicily on a Vespa. I started by riding more or less across the middle, from Marsala to Catania. Before coming down from the hills to Catania, I stopped off at the market at Adrano, where I’d bought some figs of striking beauty and unforgettable flavour, an exquisite harmony of sweetness, sharpness,...

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