Serving Up Some Butcher Love
Ricky Rowell has a passion for meat that has caused our patrons to fall in love with the high quality products we serve behind our meat counter. He’s the kind of guy who will drop just about anything he’s doing to help a customer out, even if it means taking a phone call when he’s already gone home for the day. It’s also not unusual for a customer to deliver some little goody or a thank you gift to Ricky for a job well done.
Yet, as charming and accommodating as he may be, Ricky is no milquetoast. Hiding behind that modest, kindhearted personality, is one tough fella. Think about it. A man who spends most of his week working in a refrigerated room with raw meat and a set of meat cleavers is bound to be pretty plucky.
While most teenage boys were in the house playing video games, Ricky spent his summers learning how to tear down sides of beef in a slaughterhouse and educating himself on the best cuts of meat. As a 14-year-old boy, growing up in a rural community in Florida, he never dreamed that his boyhood training was preparation for a lifelong career.
In fact, when Ricky was growing up, kids had no reason to dream about becoming a butcher. By the end of the 20th Century, prepackaged meats flooded local supermarkets, converting craftsmen into mere meat slicers. However, today Ricky is reviving the art of a butcher and his knowledge is transforming the way our customers think about the kinds and qualities of meat they consume.
“Working at Midtown Market really challenges me to learn,” Ricky says. “My customers ask me some pretty tough questions sometimes, so before I put anything out there for them to consume I learn everything about that product that they could ever want to know.”
Ricky is an expert at his trade, not only because of his fine ability to cut meat, but also because he understands the importance of making available grass fed, all natural meat to the community. Unlike an ordinary butcher, Ricky goes one step further and prepares fresh, creative entrees that customers, worn out from a day at the office, can simply slide into the oven,following the simple instructions he provides for each meal.
“There is nothing more satisfying than preparing the beginnings of a good meal that my customers can take the credit for preparing at home,” Ricky says.
Ricky doesn’t mind sharing his secrets on how to select the best cuts of meat. Here are a couple of tips to get you prepped for grilling season.
- When buying beef, the best taste is going to come from cuts that are fatty, rather than grisly. The best way to determine the difference is to choose meat with white, marbled lines. Avoid beef with silver lines. Silver indicates gristle and the meat won’t have the same delicious taste and tenderness.
- When selecting fresh fish, avoid filets with muted colors. For instance, a tuna steak should have a nice, deep pink color, rather than a hue that looks as if it’s beginning to grey.
Now, get out there and eat some meat!