Check out newly opened The Heart and Trotter butcher shop in San Diego! We are super excited to have Heart and Trotter as Butchers Guild Members, take a look at this great article about their opening on Thrillist.
“The Heart and Trotter’s mission is to provide San Diego with the highest quality, local, and sustainable meats and products. We work with local farms that are dedicated to humanely raising and slaughtering the animals. Our meats will never be exposed to hormones, antibiotics or chemicals.
Our shop will re-invent the traditional meat counter by building the first exclusively local, whole animal butcher shop in San Diego. In addition to customary cuts, we will offer non-conventional cuts of meats, meat products, produce and artisanal foods crafted in-house and by neighboring farms and small businesses. Moreover, in an effort to reverse the damage factory farming inflicts on animals, humans and the environment, we seek to educate the public on the benefits of sustainable butchery and supporting local, community-based agriculture.”
John Stewart & Duskie Estes, Bovolo, Black Pig Meat Co.
Relocating to Seattle in 1994, John worked at Etta’s Seafood and Palace Kitchen, where he met his future wife and Queen of Porc Duskie Estes. While sous-cheffingat the well-known Cafe Lago he fell deeply in love with all things Italian. John could easily resonate with the Italian generosity of spirit, the connection between food and family, and the inclination not to waste a morsel [snout to tail philosophy].
John is a 1990 graduate of the University of Colorado at Boulder, an avid gardener, and after the move to Sonoma, a blossoming chicken farmer. He is also a devoted salumist having studied with chef Mario Batali and at the University of Iowa Meat Lab. He is responsible for Black Pig Meats, bacon and salumi made form antibiotic and hormone free pork, boar and lamb.
Greg Esmond is currently taking a leave from the restaurant world to obtain his Bachelors degree in Food Science (with minors in Animal Science and Chemistry) to better understand the hows and whys of food behavior. Prior to this new adventure, Greg was the Executive Chef of Bordinos Restaurant where he started a charcuterie and cured meat program from whole Berkshire hogs. Before moving to Fayetteville, Greg worked in some of the top kitchens in the US and France. He has also taken classes at the Iowa State Meat Science Lab and was a 2008 Jean-Louis Palladin Foundation Grant recipient, which he used to study whole muscle meat curing from start to finish at Newman Farm and La Quercia Artisan Cured Meats.
Butcher and Meat Department Manager, Taylor’s Market, Sacramento, CA
Butcher Paul Carras began his career, cleaning the meat department at Sacramento’s Taylor’s Market in 1996. In 1998, while he was working on his B.S. at California State University at Sacramento, he began his training as an old-style butcher at Taylor’s under the guidance of the owner, Danny Johnson. Since graduating college, Paul says, “Butchering has been my life.”
In 2013, Paul was part of the Taylor’s Market team that won the Flying Knives Competition at the Eat Real Festival in Oakland, California.
As meat department manager at Taylor’s Market, Paul teaches a variety of butchering classes offered by Taylor’s, including the hunter’s butchering and hands-on hog butchering classes. His biggest pleasure as a butcher is breaking down whole animals such as beef, hogs, goats and lambs. He enjoys lamb butchering the most because it demonstrates his skills as an experienced butcher.
Paul is a member of The Butchers Guild.
Ryan is a Seattle bred meat head, previously was Head Butcher at a small butcher shop in Woodinville, WA. Graduated from SSCC in Spring ’11, with a degree in Culinary arts and Restaurant Managment, although he was worked in various arenas of the food industry for over 14 years. He always dreamed of being a butcher and now having realized his dream, he can honestly say that he loves what he does, being mostly self taught, with the help of some great literature, and one month of training, he also admits that he still has so much to learn.
Trevor Morones is a relative newcomer to the industry. As a teenager working his way up the ranks of the kitchen brigade, Morones took his excitement for culinary arts to New York City where he graduated from the French Culinary Institute in 2010, Morones began his vocation in the kitchen, working under recognized Michelin stared chefs before finding a home amongst the ranks of retail butchers at Eataly. After a year of service, Trevor’s interest in butchery had grown into an eagerness to decode the craft of butchering, instigating a move to work directly next to top meat purveyor, Pat La Freida. There he learned the ins and outs of wholesale meat, HACCP compliance, and International markets. Currently, working as a HACCP consultant, Morones hopes to use his knowledge to one day open a retail butcher shop of his own.
Eric Veldman Miller and Matt Azevedo, V. Miller Meats
Eric is currently opening V. Miller Meats in Sacramento CA, and has recently completed an intensive apprenticeship in Whole Animal Butchery at Sutter Meats under Butcher Terry Regassa. He decided to open his own shop after working in fine dining for the past 15 years. During his career, he was the lead instructor at Le Cordon Bleu, focusing on the butchery and international cuisine curriculum, as well as working under great chefs in Calistoga, San Francisco and Sacramento.Matt first gained experience in whole animal butchery while working for his uncle in Italy, where he received a valuable introduction to whole hog breakdown and the process of dry curing and fermentation of the various hog parts.
The most valuable part of his training in butchery as a chef was while working at Chez Panisse Restaurant, where all animals are sourced whole or in full primals. After Chez Panisse Matt developed a charcuterie program at Restaurant 13 in Sacramento, using all parts of whole hogs butchered in house.
For the past year, he has been working as a culinary instructor at Le Cordon Bleu, teaching the meat and fish course.
Aaron Oster, Echo & Rig
Originally from Connecticut, Aaron spent most of his professional career in New York City behind the stoves. It wasn’t until he decided to leave and island of Manhattan for the island of Martha’s Vineyard where his passion took flight in the craft and art of butchery. There he learned about life on the farm from the many local farmers and helped bring Master Salumierie Francois Vecchio to the Vineyard where he coordinated a full week of piggery with the legendary butcher. Along with his wife a baker, he consulted and helped to build the first of it’s kind Whole Animal butcher shop/ Steak House in Las Vegas, where he is Head Butcher. Open since August 2013, the shop prides itself on continuting the tradition and responsibility of those who prepare and breakdown old world charcuterie and whole animals. With over 36 different types of charcuterie in Rotation, the butcher shop at Echo & Rig is growing into a great community center for locals. Aaron is a proud member of the guild and hopes that his apprentices will continue to build the foundation the guild has already laid out.
Stephen Pocock, Boccalone & Damn Fine Bacon,
Stephen has been smoking and curing meat for at least 10 years. What started as a hobby while he worked in the TV industry has become his profession. Since 2007 he has been at Boccalone, where he is the Salumiere. He recently launched Damn Fine Bacon, bringing his smoked pork bellies to his Bay Area fans.