Ben Siegel, Banger's, whole animal butchers, butchers guild members

Ben Siegel


As an undergrad at the University of Texas at Austin, owner of Banger’s Sausage House & Beer Garden, Ben Siegel, fell in love with The Best Wurst trailer on Austin’s famous Sixth Street. To him, a spicy jalapeno sausage was the perfect food, and the fact that there wasn’t a brick and mortar restaurant in Austin dedicated to them was baffling. Though he thought his idea of opening a sausage house had promise, he had no restaurant experience whatsoever and was also discouraged by the thought that most people have the fleeting notion of opening a restaurant at some point in their lives. So, chalking it up as nothing more than a romantic fantasy, Siegel moved to Dallas after graduation and ultimately returned to his hometown of Los Angeles to pursue a more “realistic” career in commercial real estate.

Six years later, Siegel decided to make the big change. While seated on a flight from DC to LA, it dawned on him that he had been working a job that he wasn’t completely satisfied with for far too long and concluded that life is too short to settle for anything less than excellence. Firmly believing one should be in control of his own life, Siegel decided at that very moment to follow his college dream of opening a sausage house and beer garden in the greatest city in the world, Austin, Texas. As he departed from the plane, he called his former boss and promptly resigned. That was December of 2010, and he hasn’t looked back since.

Now in it’s third year, Banger’s Sausage House & Beer Garden has become the go-to for folks on Rainey Street looking to eat, drink and relax. Siegel strives to take simple things and make them extraordinary, involving himself in every aspect of Banger’s. From the design of the craftsman-style bungalow, to the rotating menu of over 30 house-made sausages and 104 draft beers, to the carefully selected staff uniforms—thoughtful care and attention is paid to every last Banger’s detail. A typical day includes hosting staff-wide meetings with General Manager Brian O’Neill, overseeing the menu with executive chef Ted Prater, and coming up with the next big thing at Banger’s, whether it’s animal roasts at their Smoke Out Saturdays, or hosting games of human foosball and chicken shit bingo during Oktoberfest. Siegel brings a one-of-a-kind concept to Austin, an American-style beer garden, always encouraging his fellow Austinites to try something new and have a damn fine time.

When Siegel is not overseeing Banger’s, he is trying new restaurants with friends, working on his yoga/meditation practice, or enjoying all that Austin has to offer with his fiance, Lauren Pasternack, and their bulldogs, Miss Pickles (the head of security at Banger’s) and Deputy Gherkin.

Check them out on Facebook and Twitter

Barnraiser, crowdfunding, crowdsourcing, whole animal butchery, good food projects, raise money for your business.

BG Thought Leader Q&A Webinar | Allison Waddell

Learn the five most important lessons for successful crowdfunding for your Food & Farming projects. Join Barnraiser expert, Allison Waddell, as she shares fast, easy and effective tips and stories from the front lines of good food makers, producers, educators and businesses. Butchers Guild Members get a special offer of 20% off the Barnraiser fee if launched in the next 30 days. Free planning call & online workbook. ​


Food & Culinary Director
Allison’s path to her calling has been a winding road but has given her the skills to truly live her passion. With a BBA in Marketing and CIS, over a decade as a personal trainer, a culinary degree from the CIA and positions at Robert Mondavi, The Pork Board and Hotel Tonight, she is now the resident chef, trainer & marketing maven for Barnraiser. Her goal is to work hard, have fun and make a difference in this world.


Barnraiser is the only community and crowdfunding platform dedicated to the good food movement. Our mission is to celebrate those changing how we farm, eat and live by sharing their stories with the 41 million American who care able health and sustainability. Our team, our community and our mission has allowed us to maintain a success rate of 72% which is almost 3X that of our competitors. Together we can raise a million barns and make sustainability the standard.
Please register for Crowdfunding for Good Food with Allison Waddell, BG Thought Leader Q&A Webinar | on Jun 29, 2015 10:00 AM PDT at: registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Joyce Family Farms, butchers guild members, Denis Drone,

Denis Dronne


Denis Dronne, Joyce Farms
Denis was born in Loire Valley region of France, where at the time local and seasonal food was not the latest trend but a fact of life. His family kept rabbits, chickens, ducks and sheep, all harvested on site. Joyce Foods does all of their processing in-house. Denis is a classically trained chef who is skilled in multi-cultural food preparation and all levels of restaurant management. His work has been instrumental in many successful food service ventures, and is currently VP of Business/Products Development for Joyce Foods in Winston-Salem, N.C. Denis was an integral part of introducing Joyce Foods’ line of Heritage breed poultry that includes their Poulet Rouge Fermier, a French Label Rouge chicken, and their Pintade Fermiere, a Label Rouge French Guinea Hen. He also created a line of All Natural chicken sausages for both retail and food service accounts. Joyce Foods is fully committed to humanely raised and pasture raised poultry as well as grass fed and finished beef.

Joe Cloud, T&E Meats, whole animal butcher, butchers guild member, certified member

Joe Cloud


Joe Cloud co-owns True and Essential Meats (aka T&E Meats), in Harrisonburg, VA, along with Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm. T&E Meats is a small USDA-inspected abbatoir and meat processing facility in Harrisonburg, VA. Joe is also part owner of Greenmont Farm in Fishersville, VA, a 450 acre family farm producing grass-fed beef. Before purchasing T&E in the summer of 2008, Joe had a long and successful career as a landscape architect and urban planner for an international planning and design firm. He has always been interested in environmental, resource, and sustainability issues, and is one of the first landscape architects in the U.S. to have become LEED Accredited through the U.S. Green Building Council. Prior to this he spent time in the reforestation industry in the Pacific NorthWest, and in agricultural chemical development for Chevron Chemical (Ortho). Joe has a degree in Biology from Reed College in Portland, OR, and a Master’s in Landscape Architecture from Harvard University’s School of Design, as well as Certificates in Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Business from the Bainbridge Graduate School in Seattle, WA. A life-long cook and gardener, he believes that the availability of quality food grown with integrity is an essential component of life

Author of The Ethical Meat Handbook, butchers guild member, whole animal butcher, butchery, learn to butcher, eat local meat

Meredith Leigh

Meredith Leigh is a writer, and a food and farming specialist. She has worked as a farmer, butcher, teacher, non-profit executive director, and chef, all in search of realistic solutions for sustainable food. Author of The Ethical Meat Handbook.

Samantha Garwin, whole animal butchery, Fleisher's Pasture Raised Meats, support your local butcher, learn to butcher, butchers guild memberSamantha Garwin, whole animal butchery, Fleisher's Pasture Raised Meats, support your local butcher, learn to butcher, butchers guild member

Samantha Garwin


Samantha Garwin is Chief Operating Officer of Fleisher’s Craft Butchery, one of the largest retailers of ethically-raised beef, pork, lamb and poultry on the east coast. Prior to becoming COO, she completed an apprenticeship at Craft Butchery and continued on to become the shop’s General Manager, driving the growth of Connecticut’s first sustainable, whole-animal butcher shop and restaurant. Earlier in her career, as Production Manager for Maya Mountain Cacao, a direct-trade cocoa bean sourcing operation in Belize, Sam managed the processing of organic cacao beans through 400% growth in volume and staff. Before joining the ethical food movement, Sam conceptualized, designed and deployed e-commerce and business analytics software solutions for Oracle. She holds her BA in information science and biology from Cornell University.

Cuisine U, Charcuterie Classes with Brian Polcyn, butchers guild member, whole animal butchery, learn to butcher whole pigs, cure meat

Cuisine U Charcuterie Workshop | Brian Polcyn

To be skilled in merchandising a whole animal in the most profitable way, you must know how to cut it, cook it and cure it. Meat curing is a master skill that, when done wrong can produce costly, disappointing and dangerous results. If you are a chef or butcher who wants to learn how to cure meat, learn from expert Butchers Guild Member, Brian Polcyn, co-author of  Charcuterie: The Craft of Salting, Smoking, and Curing  & Salumi: The Craft of Italian Dry Curing

Upcoming Class:
When: Tuesday July 21st & Wednesday July 22nd 9am to 3pm both days
Where: West GA Technical College | 4600 Timber Ridge Drive | Douglasville, GA 30135


Cuisine U has held classes in many US cities the past two years. Many of the top chefs in each city were in attendance, including chefs from TV shows such as Hell’s Kitchen. Taste, Chopped and Top Chef. Plus, nationally known chefs such as David Burke, Morimoto, Michael White, Emeril, Bradley Ogden, Michael Tusk, Kevin Rathbun, Gerry Kaskala, Anne Quatrano, Linton Hopkins, Kent Rathbun, Dean Fearing, Greg/Gabrielle Denton, Michael Schwartz, Danny Grant, Jeff McGinnis, Norm Van Aken and others have sent chefs to our classes. In addition, we have had a lot of artisan butchers attend, who own their own shops like Belmont Butchery in Richmond, VA, The Whole Ox in Plainsville, VA, Miami Smokers in Miami, Proper Sausages in Miami and McCann’s Local Meats in Rochester, NY, just to name a few.

Whole Hog Butchery • Both USDA & European/Seam Butchery • Sausage making techniques • Proper use of Salt • Fermentation • Whole Muscle Cure • Ground Dry Cure • Uses of Salt, Nitrites and Nitrates • Numerous stories of Chef Polcyn’s travels to Italy & Spain * Pork products to take with you • Wine/Spirit or Beer Tastings w/Charcuterie • Breakfast and More.
Our two day class is a compressed version of Chef Polcyn’s six (6) week charcuterie class that he has taught for the last 18 years at Schoolcraft Culinary School in Livonia, Michigan. During the two day class we make 22/23 items such as, Cotechino, Mortadella, Porchetta di Testa, Zampone and many other items out of Chef Polcyn’s two books.
If you have any interest in attending or sending one of your chefs or butchers to our class, please contact Victor Rose
learn to butcher, butchers guild Q&A webinar, learn about membership with the butchers guild

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The local butcher shop, berkeley, whole animal butchers, learn to butcher, aaron and monica rocchino bg mentors

The Local Butcher Shop | RFRS Picnic

RFRS Picnic with The Local Butcher Shop

Real Food Real Stories, get your tickets here!

Saturday, June 20, 2015 from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM (PDT)

Oakland, CA

“The Local Butcher Shop is a premiere Bay Area butcher shop selling high quality, sustainable meat and poultry. We practice whole animal butchery, buying animals directly from local farmers and ranchers located within 150 miles of our Berkeley shop. Our product is always pasture raised and antibiotic and hormone-free, and we can custom cut any cut for you while you wait.

We aim to positively impact eaters, farmers, ranchers, food artisans, and fellow butchers through our community-based business by sourcing and cutting the finest meat available in the Bay Area and by teaching our customers how to source and cook meat.”

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