Thursday, 29 January 2009

Most Romantic London Restaurant For Valentine's Day

Flowers and chocolates are a good start, but what could be a better way to impress that special someone on Valentine’s Day than with an unforgettable meal at a romantic restaurant?

Montpeliano Restaurant would make a perfect backdrop for a romantic evening for two for Valentine's Day.

Beautiful romantic atmosphere, fresh and tasty Italian food to die for and an exceptional wine list make Montpeliano the perfect setting for an unforgettable Valentine's day.

Please visit our website for more informations and online booking

Montpeliano Restaurant
13 Montpelier street
London, SW7 1HQ, UK
T. +44(0)2075890032

Italian Wines - Grape Varieties

Italy grows varietals that are grown nowhere else (well, almost nowhere, although Sangiovese has become fashionable among New World winemakers wanting to do Something Different) in the world.

* Nebbiolo
* Sangiovese
* Aglianico
* Barbera
* Dolcetto
* Malvasia
* Montepulciano
* Moscato (which the French grow as Muscat)
* Tocai Friulano
* Trebbiano

Don't concern yourself too much with these, as you'll be buying by label name anyway. The two most interesting ones are Sangiovese and Nebbiolo, which are used to make good red wine.

Montpeliano Restaurant
13 Montpelier street
London, SW7 1HQ, UK
T. +44(0)2075890032

Italian Wine Labels

In Italy, wine with food is a way of life. Italians have been making wine for thousands of years, and know a thing or two about enjoying it. There's nothing quite like a loud Italian dinner with great food and friends, where everyone is slightly more animated than usual from the four glasses (each) of Chianti.

There are also great practical advantages to Italian wine, mostly due to the popularity and abundance of good Italian restaurants in the United States. What else but Italian wine for your Italian dinner?

Wine quality in Italy has improved dramatically over the last century or so, when Italians decided to export competitive fine wine. In the past, the focus was on making a whole lot of wine from whatever was available so the entire family can get drunk and argue loudly at dinner, so the wine was relatively unremarkable (with exceptions, of course). Modern Chianti is much bolder and zestier than old Chianti (the blend proportions have changed: it used to be nearly a third white wine, and now it is almost entirely red Sangiovese), because of the modern focus on really getting quality from the grapes instead of just making a whole lot of wine.

Compared to France and Germany, which make sense after a while, deciphering an Italian label is black magic. Italian wines may be labelled in several different ways, instead of the region-first rule that dominates most of Europe.

First, like the rest of Europe, Italian wines may be labelled by the region they come from. For example, Chianti and Soave are named by the region.

The wines may also be labelled by the grape variety. Barbera and Pinot Grigio are grape varieties, and you may see wine labelled as such. Sometimes you will also see a region designation appended, like d'Asti or di Montalcino.

The wine may also be labelled by a traditional name, which tells you absolutely nothing. You may see these labelled as "Est! Est! Est!" or "Vino Nobile" because that's what people have been calling it for hundreds of years. There are often great stories about how these names came to be, but every winemaker tells a completely different version, and likely none of them are true.

You can also find wines with trademarked names, like "Rubesco" or "Summus." These also mean absolutely nothing except that some marketing weenie thought it sounded good. Unlike the traditionally-named wines, they haven't been around as long (and thus aren't as cool) and can be used by only one producer.

On top of all this, there are the regulatory designations, which can apply to any of the labelling types above. The regulatory designation is often the only mark of sanity on the label, but even that doesn't help much. The possible designations are:

Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita (DOCG)

This is the top designation; it means that the wine was made using appropriately traditional methods and appropriately traditional grapes (for weak definitions of traditional; current Chianti is quite unlike the Chianti of a hundred years ago). DOCG wines must also pass a taste test by the government regulators.

Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC)

This means that the wine is basically what it claims to be, assuming you can decipher the label. The wine must be produced in the usual manner using the usual grapes and methods that are appropriate to the wine and region.

Indicazione Geografica Tipica (IGT)

This is the designation for quality wine that isn't DOC or DOCG, usually because of the use of nontraditional methods or grapes. A region is named somewhere.

Vino da Tavola

This is the lowest grade table wine, with no interesting designations whatsoever.

Montpeliano Restaurant
13 Montpelier street
London, SW7 1HQ, UK
T. +44(0)2075890032

Monday, 26 January 2009

Montpeliano Restaurant Linguine with lobster Recipe

If you are up for a beautiful treat why don't you try Montpeliano world famous Linguine lobster!

Here the recipe:


1 lobster (about 1kg) or 2 small lobsters, either very fresh or alive
400g linguine
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Half glass of white wine
2 tbsp bottled/canned tomato passata
4 tomatoes
A handful of parsley, finely chopped, reserving the stalks for the stock

For the stock:

1tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Half carrot, cut into chunks
Half onion, cut into chunks
1 celery stalk, cut into chunks
1 bay leaf
2 black peppercorns
Half glass of white wine
1/2tablespoon tomato paste

To make the stock, heat the olive oil in a pan and add the vegetables, bay leaf, peppercorns and parsley stalks. Sweat for a couple of minutes to soften, but not colour.

Add the lobster head and, with a wooden spoon, crush it a little, to release the juices. Add the white wine and cook until the alcohol has evaporated completely. Add the tomato paste and carry on cooking over a low heat for another two minutes or so, taking care that the paste doesn't burn. Add a little water, enough almost to cover. Bring to the boil and then turn down the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Pass through a fine sieve and keep on one side.

Take the tail of the lobster and split it in half lengthways through the shell. Cut each half into pieces, about 1.5-2cm. We leave the shell on because it gives a little more shape to the dish but, if you prefer, you can remove the shell at this stage.

Put the claws in a pan of boiling water for about 30 seconds. Remove and cool. With the back of a knife, crush the claws and pick out the meat. Keep to one side (if you are not making the sauce straight away, put in the fridge).

Get a large pan of boiling water ready for the linguine.

Blanch the fresh tomatoes in the boiling water for about 10 seconds, take them out with a slotted spoon, put them under cold running water, and skin them. Cut them in half and remove the seeds, then cut each half into four, so that you have eight pieces.

Heat half of the olive oil in a large sauté pan. Add the chilli and garlic and cook it gently for a few minutes, until the garlic starts to colour. Add the chopped lobster and cook for about 30 seconds, tossing the pieces around. Season.

Add the white wine, allow the alcohol to evaporate and turn off the heat. Add the fresh tomato and the tomato passata, with a ladleful of stock.

Meanwhile, cook the linguine in the salted boiling water for about a minute less than the time given on the packet (usually 5-6 minutes). Drain and add to the sauce, with the rest of the oil.

Toss thoroughly for about a minute to let the pasta finish cooking and allow the starch to thicken the sauce (if you need to loosen it slightly, add a bit more stock). You will see that, after a minute or so, the starch that comes out of the linguine will help the sauce to cling to the pasta, so that when you serve it the linguine will stay coated in the sauce. Sprinkle on the parsley and serve straight away.

Montpeliano Restaurant
13 Montpelier Street
London, SW7 1ET
T. +44(0)2075890032

Friday, 23 January 2009

Montpeliano Restaurant One Of The London's Most Famous Italian Restaurants

In leafy Montpelier Street, opposite Harrods, famous London Italian restaurant Montpeliano has been impressing Knightsbridge diners for over 3 decades. Opened in 1974 by restaurateur Antonio Trapani, Montpeliano has achieved landmark status in Knightsbridge as the place to go for formal, classic Italian cooking.

Absolutely everyone who is anyone has dined at Montpeliano, with some of the famous guests having left autographed photos behind which adorn the walls. Scores of celebrities have made Montpeliano their number one Italian restaurant in London.

It was at Montpeliano where Justin Timberlake took Kylie and Dannii Minogue on the raucous Brit Awards night of 2003.

A delightful venue on two levels that reflect its stylish surroundings, the crisp white table linen is illuminated by pin spot lights and the a la carte menu is complemented by an extensive and luxurious Italian wine list and wonderful five stars service.

Signature dishes at Montpeliano include green asparagus with melted parmesan and butter, oven-baked aubergines with tomato, mozzarella and Parmesan, Cappellini (thin spaghetti)with fresh crab, linguine lobster and the best chocolate profiteroles in London. All ingredients used in Montpeliano are extremely fresh and delivered daily

If you're looking for a romantic London restaurant for dinner, the ground floor of Montpeliano is an absolute must. Underneath a sculptured, sliding glass roof & amongst a plethora of plants, this is the perfect spot for spending sunny days and starry nights. A fantastic Italian restaurant of the first degree, Montpeliano will certainly not disappoint.

Montpeliano Restaurant
4 Relton Mews
London, SW7 1ET
T. +44(0)2075890032