A Cut Above!
We are all well aware that the high street is taking a bit of a battering, thanks to the rise in supermarkets, online food sites, and more. Yet when it comes to purchasing meat, there are a number of reasons why your local butcher is the better choice. In recognition of National Butchers Week – 9-15 March 2020, Sara Stephen discovers why your local butcher is a cut above the rest…
Superior selection – Your local butcher can provide you with the most diverse range of products and cuts possible, as well as specialty items that other outlets just can’t match.
Freshest quality – Meat from a local butcher is, generally speaking, fresher that meat purchased elsewhere. Cut right in front of you, as opposed to pre-cut, pre-packaged and waiting on a shelf, you can’t get much fresher than that!
Supporting the local economy – Every time you choose to buy from your local butcher, as opposed to national chains, you are helping to boost the economy, make a responsible purchase, and support responsibly sourced meat.
High customer service, care and satisfaction – You can’t beat the experience and service served up at your local butchers. Working with whole carcasses, your local butcher knows exactly where each cut of meat comes from, and how it should be treated. What’s more, your butcher will cut it to your exact requirements, and even throw in some recipe tips and advice too.
Affordable pricing – Contrary to popular belief, meat is not always cheaper from a national supermarket on from online sites. Of course this can be the case in some instances but, generally speaking, your local butcher can be just as affordable. With regular special offers and a higher quality of meat, you will actually find you get more for your money.
Sustainability – Using a local butcher is the most sustainable option. With just a handful of suppliers, your butcher knows exactly where each animal comes from, what it has been fed, and its provenance. On top of that, your butcher will use the whole animal, making it the most sustainable choice.
Kent’s Best Butchers
With National Butchers Week just around the corner, we wanted to celebrate the host of local butchers we are so lucky to have here in Kent. Here is a round up of the very best butchers in our local area:
Macknade’s butchery promise is “To provide the best quality meat, with the best provenance, using the best skills.” And they do not disappoint!
As the only certified butcher of pasture-fed meat in East Kent, Macknade aims to provide the best tasting meat, and deliver the best eating experience they can. They work closely with farmers, producers and game dealers, to offer a selection of premium fresh meat from their butchery counter.
From traditional lamb, pork and beef that is full of flavour, to the highest grade chickens and game, including venison, rabbits, hares, partridge and duck, Macknade has something for everyone. What’s more, the team cure their own bacon in-house, make a variety of different sausages using traditional and unusual blends, and even offer haggis and faggots made to their own family recipe.
Why not see for yourself, and visit the team at Macknade Food Hall, Selling Road, Faversham, ME13 8XF.
The Goods Shed, Canterbury
An exclusively local, nose-to-tail butchers block, The Goods Shed strictly sources whole carcasses from local, high welfare farmers only.
As Susanna, founder of the Goods Shed explains: “We have amazing meat from our local farms via small, local abattoirs only. We have beef from Duncan Anderson near Doddington with beautiful butter-coloured fat, porky pork from the village of Coldred, Laughton Poultry’s amazing Kentish ranger chickens from just outside Canterbury, and Al Palmar’s delicious spring lamb from Shottenden. We want to keep nurturing the local economy, keeping our local farmers and abattoirs firmly in business.”
Their team of skilled and knowledgeable butchers are on a mission to connect their customers with the meat they eat, encouraging them to eat better meat and to understand and enjoy every part of the animal. As Christian, head butcher, says: “We can be so nimble without the middleman. Not only providing really great quality, local product at excellent value, but bringing meat to life in a way that supermarkets or larger butchers can’t. Our sausages are free from additives and we like to play with the ingredients as the season changes – adding exciting fruits and herbs – and our bacon is smoked right here on the premises. Beyond the day-to-day we have incredible offal and cuts that are simply unavailable elsewhere.”
Visit The Goods Shed to sample for yourself, at Station Road West, Canterbury, CT2 8AN.
The Butcher of Brogdale
Where local quality counts, the award-winning Butcher of Brogdale takes pride in following traditional principles in hanging and maturing meat slowly to provide superior quality, taste and flavour.
They offer specialist and seasonal meats, including venison and pheasant, alongside their fresh meat; beef joints, pork tenderloin, lamb meat and sausages. By following the butchering tradition of preparing and cutting meat on site, they ensure that freshness and taste is paramount.
So whether you visit their main branch in Faversham, or their shops in Ashford, Gillingham, Food Hall in Canterbury, Ruxley Manor Food Hall, and Notcutts Food Hall, you can be assured that they all provide the same high standards of excellence.
Hartley Farmshop, Cranbrook
Hartley Coffee House & Farmshop is a family run business that has been at the centre of farming in Kent for 8 generations. A recent addition of pigs to supply their butchery has been introduced, allowing them to provide some of the freshest meat possible.
All of their beef, chicken, pork and lamb comes from local traditional breeds, which are bred by farmers who are as passionate about animal welfare as they are. Seasonal treats such as wild boar, venison and game are regularly on offer, and make sure to try their award-winning Appledore Turkeys – perfect for any occasion!
Visit the team at Hartley Road, Cranbrook, TN17 3QG.
Recently crowned Kent Butcher Shop of the Year at the Taste of Kent Awards 2019, SW Doughty is a family butchers in Doddington.
With their own abattoir and farm shop, the Doughty family have been providing customers with top quality meat and local produce for over 100 years. They know that today, more than ever, the provenance and known quality of meat supply is highly regarded.
Providing locally sourced farm assured quality beef, pork and lamb, SW Doughty also offers delicious award-winning sausages in a variety of flavours, alongside free range geese, turkey, cockerels, chickens and ducks. Taking great pride in providing their customers with exactly the cut or joint of meat they require, their experienced team are only too happy to help.
So if you are looking for fresh meat or even home cooked ham, ox tongue, pasties and sausage rolls, visit SW Doughty at The Street, Doddington, Sittingbourne, ME9 0BH.
Crouch Family Butchers
Crouch Family Butchers is your destination for exceptional quality, provenance-assured meat, prepared with skill for the taste of tradition.
A family-run butchers for 40 years, their team are talented and knowledgeable – able to easily guide you through finding the best cuts for whatever you have in mind, from a midweek dinner to a special cut for something more spectacular.
Their meat is sourced only from farms that they know and trust for quality and standards, including local Staplehurst for their game. Alongside a wide range of meat, their three shops, in Staplehurst, Bearsted and Wadhurst, also boast a selection of homemade sausages, burgers, pies, oven-ready prepared meals, and good-to-go meat packs.
Visit their largest store at 1-2 The Parade, Bearsted Green, Maidstone, ME14 4DN for the full Crouch experience.