Exciting times at Meat London. We are linking up with Weber BBQ’s. Our Meat N16, Stoke Newington, shop will become the North London Weber Grill Acadamy. The growth of barbequing in recent years has been huge. Every year at Meat London we see a real surge of positivity as a glimpse of early spring sunshine encourages our customers to dust off the BBQ, top up on charcoal and head off in search of great meats with which to treat themselves, their families and their friends. The lure of cooking outdoors is almost primeval. An open flame and a truly delicious steak quickly takes us back to a time when man lived without the luxuries of a modern kitchen or a boy on a moped risking life and limb to deliver Pizza. And, of course, it’s so healthy and social. Fresh air, fresh foods and no TV can only be a good thing.

Like everything else, BBQ equipment keeps pace with the times. Modern BBQ’s are invariably attractive, they are always robust and the new ‘top down’ versions can pretty well do anything that can be achieved in the modern kitchen mentioned above. I’m told by the chaps from Weber that it’s even possible to create a Chocolate Dessert. I can’t wait to see that!

A good number of years ago now I met, and started dealing with, a gentleman by the name of Martin Lewis, who produces the finest BBQ charcoal. After the storms of 1987 much of the woodlands in the south of England were left devastated. By 1989 two like minded men had set up a company, in conjunction with the National Trust, to produce E.Co friendly English Lumpwood Charcoal. Martin joined the company in 1995 and is still working at producing charcoal from sustainable woodlands in Kent and Surrey and marketing it to a great many of London’s top food shops. Martin also does the deliveries himself. It’s a little difficult to argue that charcoal production is totally eco friendly, but like anything else, when the job is done properly, using coppiced trees, in a sustainable manner, we can appreciate the care and hard work of yet another great artisanal British company.

The Beer fridge, in the Wine section at Meat NW5, is fully loaded with some truly fantastic craft beers. The Tufnell Park customers have been enjoying our selection and offering positive feedback for a number of months now. If you haven’t visited the beer fridge, now is a great time to see what we have got.

It’s still cold outside and I’m not expecting the whole of North London to become covered in BBQ smoke any time soon, but it’s a decent option with so much great sport coming our way in the next few months.

So it’s not enough for us at Meat London to supply the most delicious Steaks, Pork Chops, Sausages, Burgers etc. We don’t want to rest on our laurels with the finest BBQ sauces, rubs and condiments, and it’s not even enough to be able to supply the Charcoal and Beer. Now, we are even ready to help you use your BBQ to its max. We hope to see many of our customers at our Weber BBQ Grill Acadamy.

You may remember that, in the last blog, I mentioned the theft of one of our charity boxes. Despite this unfortunate incident James still managed a very credible £450.00 for the British Heart Foundation. A great effort from a very nice guy.

We are now collecting for Guide Dogs for the Blind. A very worthwhile charity with a long history. If you want to help, just drop any loose change into the box on the counter.

It’s worth mentioning that spring is on its way, and with it comes the New Season Lambs. We’re not expecting any lambs in the shops for a month or so but we are getting good reports from the farmers regarding the upcoming season. Some of you may have seen that a shortage of antipodean lamb has spiked the supermarkets, and their need for English Lamb is pushing up prices, but I won’t be getting involved in the scaremongering and I don’t see prices being any more challenging than usual. As always, we will watch the markets and do our best to maintain our quality and price.

In the meantime, it is my opinion that now is a great time to be eating lamb. The older lambs are moving towards the ‘Hogget’ stage and, while maintaining their tender nature, the slightly older meat offers delicious flavour. I always really enjoy lamb at this time of year. A nice big Roast Leg of Lamb for all the family to enjoy around the table, and a bottle of something red, robust and fruity, is all we need to see off the end of the winter chill.