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February news

As I move around, it’s been quite refreshing to see London so busy. Of course, by nature of our Meat London business, I spend most of my time in North London, but, as some of you will know, I live in South East London, on the Kent borders. My daily commute brings me into London Bridge, and then a 149 bus ride up through the City, Liverpool St, Shoreditch, Dalston and, eventually, Stoke Newington. Most days I make the journey to Tufnell Park and/or Swain’s Lane, to catch up on our teams, and see what’s going on. Of course, in recent times, moving around London has become more difficult and much slower, but I don’t even mind that really, I like to take in views of the shops that I pass, the people going about their daily activities and the general‘atmosphere’ of our beautiful City. It seems that I’m not alone. The West End is very busy, as is the City, out of town centres and retail parks. However, our local high street traders are trying really hard, and bring fantastic value to their local customers. The last couple of years have been difficult, and brought many adversities. It would be nice if we could all remember the independents in 2024, and ‘Shop Local’.

Private Celebrations

It’s a bit too soon to turn our attention to ‘Outdoor Eating’, but many of you will be planning spring and summer events for family, friends and corporate shenanigans. There is so much fun to be had in being outside, eating and drinking with the people we love, and even better if someone else takes all the pressure and responsibility of providing the catering. The Meat London Events team, headed by Craig Martin, offer a full service for every type of event. From straight food service from the BBQ, to our Lamb or Hog Roast, we can provide everything you want, including our delicious meats and poultry, cheeses, charcuterie, beers and wines. Alternatively, you can hire the roaster for a 'Do It Yourself' hog roast, which will include the pig, delivery/collection and fuel. All of our offers are bespoke, so it’s all about asking for what you want, and letting Craig come up with the goodies.


From Game Day to Love Day

As you read this Newsletter, the Game Season will have come to an end, with the last shot having been taken on 31st January. Time to rest, and look forward to the Glorious 12th August. But, let’s not wish our lives away, we are going to be having plenty going on between now and then (not least our Valentine celebrations on 14th Feb). However, it’s worth remembering that we have had a great season. Derek, our game supplier, has done a great job this year, and we have had some splendid birds and venison, and as I thank Derek for looking after us so well, I will remind our customers that there will still be some game around for the next week or two, so pop into our shops and think of beautiful winter dishes while I conjure up some ideas for when the weather breaks into Spring . Thank you Derek.

On the subject of St Valentine, it might not always be apparent, but the Meat London Team are a mushy, sentimental lot, and they always come up with something fun for the romantics amongst us. Succulent Lamb Racks, Juicy Beef Fillets and a Valentine Pork Chop are always the favourites. Soft delicate cheeses, Champagne and sparkling Rose means we have enough to win any heart. We look forward to helping the amorous and the hopeful around about Feb 14th.


Farewell to  'dry January'

To finish this month, and as so many of our customers move away from ‘dry January’, I would point out that we are bang in the middle of our wine suppliers ‘tasting’ season. At this time every year, the wine trade goes into a full-on presentation of what we should, and might, be drinking in the spring and summer. In the last year, we have had a turnaround of our wine team at Meat London, so with new faces come new palates, and I can assure our customers that we will be having a delicious selection coming into the shops within the next couple of weeks. As a PS. to that, please keep your voice down when speaking to Gessica. There is no telling where she was yesterday!!



Cherry Cola Beef Short Ribs

Liberally cover the Short Ribs with the Cherry Cola rub and leave to marinade overnight.

Using 1/3 of a Chimney Starter (around 8 briquettes), get the BBQ to 140˚. Set the BBQ for indirect cooking, with lit briquettes to one side of the BBQ and add the wood chunks. Smoke penetrates meat when it’s raw. Once a layer of cooked meat forms on the outside, smoking has little effect.
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Lamb Saddle with Caramelised Baby Onions and White Wine Jus

Lamb Saddle

I make no secret of the fact that this is one of my favourite cuts. The saddle is from the middle of the animal and is all soft, tender meat. Rolled properly, it looks so elegant and is a real winner for any dinner party. Adding the soft, sweet baby onions on the side is a bit like putting a silk hanky in your pocket before you leave the house. An unassuming touch of decadence.
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Beef Wellington

With Christmas upon us, I am proposing the always decadent Beef Wellington. ‘Celebrity’ Chefs, and all those weekend glossy mags, will tell you that only a ‘Centre Cut’ Beef Fillet will do the job. That’s all very well if you are running a smart restaurant, and you want every piece to look the same, but the Rump Fillet, Chateaubriand, has all the flavour, is just as tender and will save a few pennies. It’s my cut of choice. As with all good things, your Beef Wellington will need a little investment of money and time, but, as it sets off your festive table, you will decide it is worth the effort. (BTW; this is the Christmas treat destined for my table this year).
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