Puzzle at a Glance
Daily Telegraph Puzzle NumberDT 26856
Publication Date in The Daily TelegraphThursday, May 3, 2012
SetterPetitjean (John Pidgeon)
Link to Full ReviewBig Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 26856]
Big Dave's Review Written ByBig Dave
Big Dave's Rating
|Difficulty - ★★||Enjoyment - ★★★★|
█ - solved without assistance
█ - incorrect prior to use of puzzle solving tools
█ - solved with assistance from puzzle solving tools
█ - solved with aid of checking letters provided by puzzle solving tools
█ - unsolved or incorrect prior to visiting Big Dave's blog
█ - reviewed by Falcon for Big Dave's blog
My stumbling blocks today were the British gangsters and my failure to recognize the reference to a heraldic tincture.
Notes on Today's Puzzle
This commentary is intended to serve as a supplement to the review of this puzzle found at Big Dave's Crossword Blog, to which a link is provided in the table above.
1a Sporting achievement at the heart of Madrid team (12)
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol (Royal Madrid Football Club), commonly known as Real Madrid, is a professional football [soccer] club based in Madrid, Spain.
10a A good look round South African capital (5)
Lo is an archaic exclamation used to draw attention to an interesting or amazing event • and lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them. Lagos is the chief city of Nigeria, a port on the Gulf of Guinea. Originally a centre of the slave trade, it became capital of the newly independent Nigeria in 1960. It was replaced as capital by Abuja in 1991.
11a Austrian capital’s change of leadership and tone (6)
The allusion in Big Dave's hint is likely to American-born English actress Sienna Miller.
12a Legendary American greeting unexpected thaw within Alaska’s borders (8)
The Song of Hiawatha is an 1855 epic poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, featuring an Indian hero and loosely based on legends and ethnography of the Ojibwe (Chippewa, Anishinaabeg) and other Native American people. There is virtually no connection, apart from name, between Longfellow's hero and the sixteenth-century Iroquois chief Hiawatha who cofounded the Iroquois League.
Hiawatha is a legendary Native American leader and founder of the Iroquois confederacy. Depending on the version of the narrative, Hiawatha lived in the 16th century and was a leader of the Onondaga or the Mohawk. Hiawatha was a follower of The Great Peacemaker, a prophet and spiritual leader, who proposed the unification of the Iroquois peoples, who shared similar languages. Hiawatha, a skilled and charismatic orator, was instrumental in persuading the Senecas, Cayugas, Onondagas, Oneidas, and Mohawks, to accept the Great Peacemaker's vision and band together to become the Five Nations of the Iroquois confederacy. Later, the Tuscarora nation joined the Confederacy to become the Sixth Nation.
13a French museum opening (6)
The Musée du Louvre — in English, the Louvre Museum or simply the Louvre — is one of the world's largest museums, the most visited art museum in the world and a historic monument. Its most popular exhibit is Leonardo da Vinci's painting, The Mona Lisa.
15a Worker eating cold ham left sauce (8)
In Crosswordland, most work gangs are made up of ants. However, today they are replaced by another insect.
18a Superior plastic or stiff paper? (4,4)
I must admit that I overlooked the heraldic reference, leaving me thinking that a card made from a thin sheet of gold would surely be anything but stiff.
19a Give a kick to Tottenham man’s leg (4,2)
Tottenham Hotspur Football Club , commonly referred to as Spurs, is an English football [soccer] club based in Tottenham, London, that plays in the Premier League (the top level league in English football).
In cricket, the on (also called the on side) is the half of the field (as divided lengthways through the pitch) away from which the batsman's feet are pointed when standing to receive the ball. Another term for this side of the field is the leg side (also called simply the leg).
23a Touch inattentive with the French nowhere to be found (6)
Le is the masculine singular form of the French definite article.
27a One Parisian in outbreak of bad acne is plenty (9)
Un is the masculine singular form of the French indefinite article.
2d Gangsters once discussed crack (5)
The Kray twins, Reggie (1933 – 2000) and Ronnie Kray (1933 – 1995) were the foremost perpetrators of organised crime in London's East End during the 1950s and '60s. Craze means (1) to produce a network of fine cracks on (a surface) • the loch was frozen over but crazed with cracks
or (2) to develop fine cracks • internal stresses often caused the glue to craze.
3d Odd, Clapton covering Cocaine initially before Money (9)
Eric Clapton is an English guitarist and singer-songwriter. Clapton is the only three-time inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: once as a solo artist, and separately as a member of The Yardbirds and Cream. Clapton has been referred to as one of the most important and influential guitarists of all time.
In Britain, the words Cocaine and Money each appeared in quotation marks. "Cocaine" is a song written and recorded by JJ Cale in 1976, but most widely known as a cover version recorded by Eric Clapton in 1977. Money and Cigarettes is an Eric Clapton album, released in 1983. Note that the surface reading accurately captures this sequence of events.
6d Gleaming silver base (5)
The symbol for the chemical element silver is Ag.
14d Not of architectural interest? Not in the book (8)
In Britain, unlisted (in reference to a building) means not having listed status • permission is needed to demolish an unlisted church in a conservation area. Listed means officially designated as being of architectural or historical importance and having protection from demolition or major alterations • a 15th-century Grade I listed building.
I thought that the book in question might be a telephone directory. However, the term unlisted number is apparently a North American usage — with the British equivalent being ex-directory number.
16d Short flight, with possible danger, and land in Kent? (3-6)
Kent is a county in South East England and one of the home counties (the counties that encircle London). It is sometimes known as the "Garden of England" for its abundance of orchards and hop gardens. Distinctive hop-drying buildings called oasts are common in the countryside, although many have been converted into dwellings. Nearer to London, market gardens also flourish.
18d Fade left with iron to centre of fairway? In his dreams! (6)
The symbol for the chemical element iron is Fe.
20d Saved money with bent teen’s goods (4,3)
In Britain, the word "bent" has the same connotation (dishonest or corrupt) as does the word "crooked" in North America. [It would appear that the British might use both bent and crooked in this sense].
22d Popular half-sister in Bury (5)
Bury is a town in Greater Manchester, England which is regionally notable for its open-air market known for its supply of a local traditional dish — black pudding (blood sausage),
25d Calamari — tip not included — for a pound (4)
The pound (also pound sterling) is the basic monetary unit of the UK, equal to 100 pence. Quid is an informal British term for one pound sterling • we paid him four hundred quid.
Key to Reference Sources:Signing off for today – Falcon
 - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
 - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
 - TheFreeDictionary.com (American Heritage Dictionary)
 - TheFreeDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
 - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford Dictionary of English)
 - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford American Dictionary)
 - Wikipedia
 - Reverso Online Dictionary (Collins French-English Dictionary)
 - Infoplease (Random House Unabridged Dictionary)
 - CollinsDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)