Lamb Chops

Wine Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon

Do you imagine Britain’s Queen dining lavishly in her castles and palaces, surrounded by courtiers, family, and state visitors? Well, yes, she has to do that for work, but she finds it a relief to take the occasional luncheon on her own. This is her solitary meal one day in Mrs Queen Takes the Train: “a single lamb chop with a thimble full of mint jelly. Three Brussels sprouts. A steamed carrot. A glass of burgundy.” She sits at her table on a wintry afternoon looking out on the palace garden, the light in the sky already diminishing, and the rain turning to sleet.

I think we often need things to cheer us up as the autumn days shorten, and the Queen is no exception. She makes an unscheduled journey after her lunch to one of the places that has made her happiest, the royal yacht, Britannia, now moored as a tourist attraction outside Edinburgh.  Trouble is, she hasn’t told anyone where she’s going, and dressed up in the strange costume she happens to be wearing, no one recognizes her. That’s how she finds herself, after her lunch, on a public train to Scotland.

There’s no need to do anything so drastic to cheer yourself up. Making yourself a decent lunch or dinner is a sure way to feel better. (Boarding trains to Scotland not required.) Standing at the counter to have a cold yogurt for your lunch is very depressing. So have this hot luncheon fit for a queen instead.