If you weren't already convinced that winter was upon us, the last couple of days would have swayed even the most adamant winter-deniers. It has been FREEZING! Well, not literally speaking, because it doesn't tend to snow or freeze over in Richmond (although being Melbourne, let's not rule anything out...), but in the most figurative sense of the word, it has been freezing.
Sydney has recently had its coldest May night in approximately 20 years, so we are definitely not alone in Melbourne.
Sure, it's cold, but that doesn't mean you need to lock yourself away and hibernate until the first light of spring. Winter can be fun, with an excuse to indulge in lots of healthy comfort food, read books snuggled under a blanket or watch an entire Netflix series in one sitting. Winter can mean early nights, uber cool winter fashion, and a time to get creative. You can use winter as an excuse to brainstorm ideas in your favourite morning cafe, whether it be life goals, ideas to help the community or even planning that next adventure.
With lots of warm and snuggly nights on the couch cradling a hot cuppa, it really is a season to relish. But let's not beat around the bush - it can get cold, so here's what you can do to keep you warm, (in a sustainable way!), this winter.
1. Hot chocolate or a cup of tea.
Mmmmm. It doesn't necessarily need to be winter to indulge in a hot cuppa, but how good is a warm mug of liquid goodness on a chilly July evening?
The first hot chocolate beverage was thought to have been created by the Mayans around 2,000 years ago, and until the 19th century was used to treat ailments such as liver and stomach problems. Whilst we don't quite use chocolate as medicine these days, no one can deny its warming and positive effects.
We love hot chocolate, and we especially love chocolate that has been ethically sourced. Where does one find the equilibrium between flavour and ethics? Look no further than Mörk artisan chocolate. Melbourne made, and with a large emphasis on 'traceability', each ingredient is traced from its production to its consumption. Want to find out more? Check out Mörk chocolate cafe In North Melbourne or come and visit us and we will dazzle you with delicious flavours such as collaborations with LuxBite: Salted caramel and Rooftop Honey.
Strangely, not a chocolate fan? Tea is the next best thing. Check out Organics for Lily tea for some beautiful Melbourne-made blends. Not only will you instantly feel warmer from the inside out, but you can find a tea for every taste and ailment! A sore throat? There's a tea for that. Tummy troubles? There's a tea for that. Trouble sleeping? You guessed it, there's a tea for that. Not only do they create gorgeous blends, but they also make tea bottles for transporting your tea (or coffee or water) and to keep your hands toasty.
2. Cashmere and Merino Wool
What better way to stay warm than 100% ethical cashmere? Rather than cranking up the heating, pop on a cashmere jumper, or wrap yourself up in a cashmere throw.
Not only are you guaranteed to be kept nice and cosy, but you will also be reducing greenhouse gas emissions generated when using the heaters, and helping to save our planet. An environmental crusader disguised in cashmere!
Nine Yaks cashmere is ethical, crafted with love by communities in Nepal. With a choice between natural and sustainably dyed ponchos, jumpers, cardigans, throws, scarves and shawls, you are sure to find the perfect accompaniment to your winter inventory.
Make a pitstop in Pookipoiga for a chat to find out more!
Lore Lore is new to Pookipoiga, handcrafted in Melbourne and made from all natural Merino wool. Created with style and love these beanies (with WONDERFUL pom-poms) and gloves will keep you fashionably warm throughout winter for seasons to come!
3. Bath with salts and candles
What better way to regenerate than a relaxing bath with natural salts and candles?
Guaranteed to be a winter warmer, soak and de-stress after work, activities or that family catch up. Using candles for lighting will not only create a relaxing ambience but will save electricity by turning off the lights.
We can recommend Summer Salt Body 'Salt Soak' as the perfect way to feel good. Not only do the 2 variations contain no nasties, they are also completely vegan-friendly with absolutely no testing on animals. Set the mood with Lavender and Sweet Orange or Rose and Geranium.
For candles, we like to think that we've found two of the best in Melbourne. HIVE candles are handcrafted in Australia from pure beeswax. With wonderful fragrances ranging from 'bora bora' to 'sugar cookies', you are definitely going to find a scent to transport you to your favourite place.
Damselfly candles are made right here in Richmond with toxic-free soy based-wax. These 'quote candles' will not only make you giggle, but they will definitely create the relaxing aura you crave after a long day at work.
4. Tibetan blankets and throws
Also created by the wonderful Nine Yaks, these gorgeous blankets are super soft and come in a rainbow of colourful patterns. They look fab as a throw on the couch or bed and even better wrapped around you in an ethical hug.
5. A hearty meal
There is nothing more warming than a delicious hearty meal in winter! Here in Bridge road, we are spoilt for choice. Whether it be a vegetarian feast from the Tofu Shop, world-class cheese from the Richmond Hill Larder, fabulous coffee from Touchwood or a zaatar wrap from the Little Bridge Cafe there is definitely something for everyone's taste!
If you want to eat in, we have a few solutions for you. To save time googling some recipes, we have a few cookbooks that will make your job a lot easier AND provide you with some delicious meals.
'Soupologie; is all about those winter warmer soups. Both sweet and savoury options (think lentil soups, mushroom, pumpkin, strawberry, apple and pear, and miso - yes this book has it all!) these plant-based recipes are gluten-free and designed to heal, cleanse and energise. Yummo!
There is nothing yummier than freshly baked sourdough bread with a smear of butter. 'Sourdough' is all things sourdough bread. Beginning with the basic sourdough starter, once you have learnt the first steps to bread making you will find a large range of interesting and wholesome recipes to try! Did someone say Pain de Campagne? Yes Please!
We hope these couple of tips help keep you toasty throughout this winter. If you're in need for more; pop in for a nice warming chai and a chat 😊
Lots of love,
the Pookipoiga Team ox