Esoteric London

No. 498: Croston Street, E8

Posted in Architectural, Food by esotericlondon on January 25, 2012

Croston Street, London, E8. Photo © Roger Dean 2011

Our Social Bees; or, Pictures of Town & Country Life, and Other Papers – Andrew Wynter M.D., 1861:

“Animal food in coffee, prepostwous [sic]!”

“Ah! my dear friend, I don’t like to disturb your equanimity, but it is a noted fact that the strong coffees used by the itinerant coffee standkeepers get their flavour from the knackers’ yards. There are manufactories over in the Borough, where they dry and pulverize horses’ blood for the sake of adulterating cheap coffees; and then the cream, how do you think they could give you such luscious cream in your coffee at a penny a cup? — why, simply enough, they thicken it with calves’ brains. If you don’t believe me, read ‘Rugg on London milk,’ and see what he found in it with his microscope.”

“Well, I’m safe, then,” I interposed, “as I never touch anything but the best green.”

“That’s just the mistake you reading men always make,” he replied. “I dare say you innocently believe that green tea is made of the young tender leaves of the plant; but the real truth is, it is black tea painted — painted and bloomed like a worn-out old hag.”

Old Routitout dipped his huge fist into the caddy, and took out a handful of young Hyson, and held it side-ways to the light on his open hand: “Do you, see that beautiful pearly green colour, that’s called the glaze — a mixture of turmeric and Prussian blue. Think, my dear fellow, of the dose of poison you have been regularly taking every night and morning; perhaps you can now account for that dreadful nightmare you had last night. […].”

One Response

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  1. nanbush said, on January 25, 2012 at 12:32 pm


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