What made you decide to open a butcher shop?
Glenn: “We liked butcher shops and thought that it was something this town really needed, a place wHere you could talk to the butcher, get specialty cuts and order things. We order rabbit, duck, guinea hens — all sorts of things that people wouldn’t normally get at the grocery store.”
What would you consider your forte or specialty?
Glenn: “Our specialty is our customer service”
Diana: “Sausage. It’s just amazing.”
Jeremy: “It’s quality, custom cuts with natural product.”
Where does the product come from?
Glenn: “All of it comes from Oregon ranches. We’re always looking to source locally as much as possible.”
Jeremy: “The bulk of it comes from Carlton Farms (in Carlton, Oregon), it’s where we get our pork and our beef. It’s all natural and grass fed. They’re renown for their pork because it’s such a high quality. They recently started dabbling in beef in the past few years and really nailed it too.”
What is your most popular product?
Glenn: “It changes every week.”
Jeremy: “If it’s raining, people are going to want stew meat. If it’s sunny, they are going to want to barbecue outside. It’s hard to say one particular thing because it’s very heavily dependent on the weather.”
Diana: “Lately there has been a bigger demand for bone marrow, bone broth and smoked ham hocks.”
Any recent trends in demand?
Glenn: “Bone broth is trendy right now. A lot of people have been trying it for the first time.”
Jeremy: “It has a lot of health benefits. We order 40 pounds of fresh, raw bones each week. They’re perfect for bone broth because they don’t have the antibiotics and hormones. When you boil them you don’t get all those impurities that come out of bones from big box stores.”
What have been some of the unusual requests?
Diana: “Well, I thought lambs feet was weird.”
Glenn: “The college asked for lungs. It was an EMT that was doing a class.
Jeremy: “Someone requested buckets of blood for Halloween.”
What’s the most underrated cut?
Glenn: “Hangar steaks. Sometimes people don’t know they are, or how flavorful and delicious they are. They don’t see them at the big box stores very often if ever at all, but hangar steaks are one of my favorite cuts.”
What are hangar steaks?
Jeremy: “It’s right at the back of the rib cage, in the area of the last rib bone. It’s just one little piece that looks like a horseshoe.”
Glenn: “It’s not as gorgeous as a rib-eye. The way it’s shaped is not as sexy, but the flavor is really good.”
What makes a sexy steak?
Glenn: “A rib-eye is one of the sexiest-looking steaks there is, or porterhouse. Marbling is something we always look at.”
Jeremy: “When you see the marbling — that’s flavor. When it’s deemed prime, you could almost not even see the red in it because there’s just so much marbling coming through.”
What’s the most difficult part?
Glenn: “Figuring out what the customer wants.”
Diana: “There hasn’t been a butcher shop in Astoria for 20 years. It’s amazing to start something new. We’re still figuring out what people in town want. Sometimes they ask for odd things.”
Jeremy: “There’s the stigma that if it’s natural it has to be expensive. Our pork bone-in country ribs are $4 a pound, you can generally get two steaks for four bucks. In the beef case, I have $6 (per pound) chuck steaks. There’s always something reasonable and affordable for everybody.”