Mushroom Risotto Recipe : Make a delicious Mushroom Risotto and use up your White Wine!

If you’ve got bottles of white wine waiting to be used up in the fridge or just fancy an excuse for a glass of white wine with dinner, this recipe for a mushroom risotto is sure to go down a treat.

Check out Cheers London on Facebook for a video example!

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Mushroom Risotto (serves 2)

  • 50g dried shitake mushrooms
  • 1 vegetable or chicken stock cube
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 250g pack chestnut mushroom, sliced and washed
  • 150g risotto rice
  • 1 x 175ml glass white wine
  • 25g butter
  • handful parsley leaves, chopped
  • 50g Parmesan (to serve)
  1. Chop the onions and garlic.
  2. Put the dried mushrooms into a large bowl and pour over 1 litre boiling water. Soak for 20 mins then chop.
  3. Chop the mushrooms.
  4. Heat the oil in a shallow saucepan or deep frying pan over a medium flame. Add the onions and garlic, then fry for about 5 mins until soft.
  5. Stir in the fresh and dried mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and continue to cook for 5-10 mins until the fresh mushrooms have softened.
  6. Tip the rice into the pan and cook for 1 min. Pour over the wine and let it bubble to nothing so the alcohol evaporates. Keep the pan over a medium heat and pour in a quarter of the mushroom stock. Simmer the rice, stirring often, until the rice has absorbed all the liquid. Add about the same amount of stock again and continue to simmer and stir – it should start to become creamy, plump and tender. By the time the final quarter of stock is added, the rice should be almost cooked.
  7. Continue stirring until the rice is cooked.
  8. Give the risotto a final stir, spoon into bowls and scatter with the cheese and remaining parsley.

Alicia Edwards for Cheers London

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Best of British, a UK vineyard

As the days get longer and the sun pokes its head from out the clouds it’s time to pay homage to home grown producers who battle against the British weather all year round.

When we think of a bottle of wine its often Napa, California, The Rhone Valley, Medoc or Provence in France that spring to mind. But have you ever thought of bringing a local wine to the dinner table?

Tucked away near the Camel Valley Estuary in Cornwall sits the Camel Valley Vineyard. One of Britain’s few and most successful wine producers since 1989.

Set up by Bob and Annie an ex army couple, the vineyard has been lovingly grown from the ground up since they moved here almost 30 years ago.

But surely the weather in Britain isn’t suitable for growing bumper crops of grapes? With plenty of sun most summers in the South West of England, the sloping hills are drenched in hot sunshine, whilst the winter brings plenty of rainfall feeding the dry ground.

Camel Valley Bottle TopsI was lucky enough to visit the winery on a Wednesday when they open to the public for tours and sampling! Not being a wine buff myself I wasn’t sure what to expect but one of the Camel Valley team led us around the vineyard and we were introduced to the vertical basket press, oak vats and barrels and wine plungers!

Of course the highlight was being led back into the warmth and sampling the delights of the wine. Sparkling white, rose and even red! Something totally new. Spit buckets were of course provided for the refined amongst us..it was debatable how much use ours got.

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The wine was divine. Knowing it had been grown only meters from our seats made it taste even better. The Camel Valley team haven’t gone empty handed. They have been awarded numerous awards for their produce. Waitrose Drinks Producer of the Year Awards in 2002, followed by a Gold Medal for The International Wine Challenge in 2005l. In 2010 they took the Trophy for ‘Best International Traditional Method Sparkling Wine’ , ahead of Bollinger and Roederer. A feat indeed.

Not just kept to Cornwall. Camel’s delights can be found in Waitrose nationally along with Hakkasan and Fortnum’s in London.

For visits to the vineyard book online at https://www.camelvalley.com/grand-tour-tasting.html

Tours run every Wednesday at 17.00 throughout April- October

Help me through a wine list! Cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay and malbec all make it on our top wine guide

Did you know there are over 10,000 varieties of wine in the world?

Being given a wine list is scary. Cheers London can help you ensure success without having to go ‘bottom right’.

1. Lewis Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

One for the fruit lovers out there. Distinct aromas of plum, blackberry and currants – whilst giving a lovely after taste of liquorice. The 2013 vintage will keep you going right through to 2028!

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2. Malbec: Alpamanta, Mendoza

Like our number one, another one for the fruit lovers. Mendoza has long been considered the ‘home’ of Malbec, so we are of course spoilt for choice. It was the balsamic traces that did it for us on this one though! Being Argentine, we of course recommend it with a good steak – for extra marks show your regional knowledge by ordering a ‘bife de lomo’.

3. Chardonnay: The Ring, Weltevrede 

Coming from The Jonker Family Estate in South Africa, this lightly bubbling chardonnay drink will please any palette with it’s refreshing lemony aroma. A favourite for a lunch-time tipple, a great accompaniment for any poultry or white fish.

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Article Written by John Kent

Prosecco is the perfect afternoon getaway!

Take the afternoon off with a prosecco brunch!

If you’re looking to take an afternoon break away or just spending an afternoon relaxing, here at Cheers London we recommend The Melody Restaurant as part of our prosecco week. A sophisticated west London restaurant that offers from top European cuisine to afternoon teas combined with high quality prosecco.

What makes the Melody Restaurant so appealing is its afternoon teas. A classic British past time provided in an elegant venue. A claim which the Melody Restaurant pride themselves on. They offer traditional scones, sandwiches and pastries with a choice of teas, coffee and fine wines. A combination that we believe will satisfy any customer. It’s why we at Cheers London believe this to be one of the perfect getaways for an afternoon in London. You can sit back with a glass of prosecco and just enjoy the afternoon.

Not only does the Melody Restaurant provide great afternoon teas, they are known for their exquisite European cuisine. Taking recipes from across the continent and applying them to their West London based restaurant. From seafood spaghetti to their grilled chicken fillet with crushed peppercorns, garlic, capers and lime juice. Perfect meals to go with a glass of fizz. The Melody Restaurant really do pride themselves on customer experience.

If you are interested to try the Melody Restaurant, they are located in Hammersmith ( ). Local tube station would Barons Court Station in which it’s a seven minute walk from. Try their fine dinning today and tweet us with your reviews!

 

By Jack Hoban

Alcohol and pancakes can be the perfect mix for any date

Loyal observers of Cheers London will have already seen how we can use previously featured drink Whisky to make everyone’s favourite sweet treat. Whisky too harsh for you though? Well have no fear, as we give you the definitive list of tipples to have alongside your sugar and lemon coated pancakes.

Like most things in life, a complete package is dependent on many factors. Fancy a sweet pancake? Well perhaps a fruit beer could be the order of the day! Looking for something more savoury? Stick to the cider! Here are just a few of our ideas, though we expect the night to take on a life of its own.

1. Smoked salmon blini

Ok, maybe a bit obvious, but Cheers London are classy if nothing else. Obviously Champagne!

Glass Champagne Piccolo Champagne Glass

2. Lemon and Sugar

Only one thing for lemon! Grab a shot of tequila whilst you’re at it – we just hope you remember Shrove Tuesday afterwards!

3. Chocolate covered goodness

Ale will always go down a treat with chocolate – the way we see it: the darker the better!

4. Chicken and Mushroom (or other savoury style)

This is a pancake not for the kids! A sophisticated meal, deserving a sophisticated beverage – Pinot Noir it is!

Follow these tips, and you’re sure to have one of your best Pancake Days to date! Happy baking all!

Article written by John Kent

Health and Alcohol: Keeping yourself slim as we approach the summer

Health is everywhere. Where once you saw fry-ups, you now see avocado on toast; where once you had hungover Sunday movie clubs, you now have health obsessed running clubs. Have no fear however, we here at Cheers London won’t be quitting our Friday tipples anytime soon! Better yet, London Personal Trainer, Guido Gabriela Basola has given us the low-down on how to stay fit and fun (please don’t tell the fitness army we said they’re not fun).

Before we go into the finer details of what to drink, there is one rule anybody wanting to achieve anything the day after an alcohol fuelled night must adhere to: DO NOT MIX YOUR DRINKS! Yes, we know after one too many, student priced vodka may seem like an acceptable substitute for more pricey G&Ts….believe us, it is not! Choose your drink, and stick to it!

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Right, what to drink then? Guido took time out of the gym tell us what drink has the smallest effect on the dreaded bulge (Guido was once manager at top London location Sketch, so knows a thing or two about drinks – you are in safe hands!)

  1. Straight spirits – gin and vodka are top of the list!

  2. Martini – we aren’t completely boring here

  3. Spirit Mixer – Skinny Bitch anyone? (That’s a vodka,lime, soda before anyone gets offended!)

  4. Skinny Prosecco – treat yourself and head to Selfridges for Guido’s personal favourite

  5. Red Wine – here’s one you didn’t know: a glass of red wine will help show your 6 pack due to dehydration. We at Cheers London therefore see it as a necessity, and that’s before we talk about the health benefits of flavonoids!

There you have it then, your one stop guide to keeping your place in the fitness army, whilst also being socially accepted by your work colleagues!

Article by John Kent