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Bird of the Day: Great Kiskadee (Xandari Resort, Costa Rica)

October 24, 2014

Jaguar, Conservation, Book Time

October 24, 2014
A captive jaguar drinks water in an enclosure at Petro Velho Farm, a refuge of the non-governmental organization NEX in Corumba de Goias, about 80 km from Brasilia, on January 11, 2013. EVARISTO SA/AFP/Getty Images

A captive jaguar drinks water in an enclosure at Petro Velho Farm, a refuge of the non-governmental organization NEX in Corumba de Goias, about 80 km from Brasilia, on January 11, 2013.
EVARISTO SA/AFP/Getty Images

We had not heard of him before listening to this interview:

Jaguars are the world’s third-largest wild cat – after tigers and lions. They have distinctive black rosettes on their fur and can weigh up to 250 pounds. Jaguars have been eradicated from 40 percent of their historic range. Today they live along a corridor from Argentina to Mexico. Their future is threatened by illegal hunting, deforestation and a loss of prey. One of the world’s leading big cat experts is responsible for creating a jaguar preserve in Central America, the first of its kind. In a new book, he shares why he’s committed to giving a voice to jaguars and how they helped him find his own voice.

Read more…

Bird of the Day: Lesser Whistling Duck (Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, Kerala)

October 23, 2014

Lesser Whistling Duck by Brinda Suresh - RAXA Collective

Throwback Thursday: October Olives Redux

October 23, 2014

One aspect of the reconnaisance for projects in Greece included embracing and honoring past experiences. The place of foodways and cuisine in the narrative of lives can never be underestimated. The taste and aroma of a specific food brings back floods of memories, crossing the bounderies of time and space.

Visiting Laconia, the region in the Greek Peloponnesus that year after year receives accolades for both it’s olives and extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) was in many ways like coming home. Coming home to family heritage, coming home to living in other olive producing countries and how we embraced those cyclical events that humans have engaged in from time immemorial.

In the village of Soustiani in Laconia we met Nikos Papadakos and his wife, after a 6 year hiatus, to again talk about their company, Lithos. In this region of olive excellence they form a cooperative of organic farmers, collecting the harvest into one source and both pressing the fruit into EVOO and packaging the olives in both jars and vacuum packed sachets for easy transport. Read more…

Phaidon Tribute To Chef, Author

October 23, 2014
169-1000-year-old-quail-egg

110 Year old quail eggs, as served at Benu

On the occasion of his third star, and with no controversy related to birds as per his colleagues in France, congratulations are in order:

The Michelin Guide only began reviewing US restaurants in 2005, yet it has established a reputation for favouring places that, while conforming to certain old-world standards, capture the finest in American dining today.

So, we were delighted to learn that Benu, Corey Lee’s Benu restaurant, which opened in San Francisco’s SOMA district in 2010, was awarded its third Michelin star, the guide’s highest accolade, when the new ratings for the city were announced yesterday. Read more…

Wine In India, Historically Intriguing

October 23, 2014
Amphora shards have been found all along India’s western coast. Courtesy National Institute Of Oceanography

Amphora shards have been found all along India’s western coast. Courtesy National Institute Of Oceanography

As Spice Harbour’s restaurant, 51, looks forward to the day when it might serve a glass of wine with an evening meal, we look back in time for a bit of inspiration, thanks to our friends at Caravan:

…In August, I spoke on the phone to A S Gaur, a marine archaeologist at India’s National Institute for Oceanography and co-author of  a paper on ancient wine imports. Speaking from Goa, Gaur said he had recently discovered amphora shards at what appears to be an ancient shipwreck near Bet Dwarka, an island off the coast of Gujarat. Amphorae were widely used in ancient times for transporting liquid goods, especially olive oil and wine. According to Gaur, the amphorae near Bet Dwarka most likely date from between the second and the fourth centuries CE. It is difficult to analyse the residues found on the shards for a conclusive answer, he said, but trying his “level best” Gaur surmised the amphorae once held wine. “Roman wine,” he said, “was very famous in India during that time.” Wrecks and shards from the same period have been found at many other sites too. All over South India, Gaur told me, “many museums have amphora shards.”

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Bird of the Day: Black-winged Stilt (Little Rann of Kutch, Gujarat)

October 22, 2014

Black-winged stilt by Sudhir Shivaram - RAXA Collective

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