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Revenge of the rosbifs


In his splendidly titled new book “1000 years of annoying the French”, author Stephen Clarke recounts a whole host of little known facts.  Amongst them, if it weren’t for the English, Champagne would be flat.  The 17th Century vintner–monk Dom Perignon was trying to eradicate the un-planned fizz, when he learnt that bubbles were all the range in London and changed his tune.  It’s a piece of history the French have erased, as is the fact that British troops taught them how to cook steak – by pointing out that you can’t properly brown meat whilst it’s wet.

My advice, if you want to keep on annoying the French for another thousand years – and who doesn’t – remind them of the above whenever in their beloved country and you’ll have hours of fun watching their reaction.

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