Andy Heath sells plenty of beef on the bone to his local customers. A mix of residential and business, they "love the theatre of seeing well-aged, dark meat", he says. In the summer, Heath places huge cuts on top of the counter of his Battersea shop, the Butcher & Grill. And in winter last year, he started experimenting with rolling ribeye cuts with flavouring, a new ploy that worked among customers who want to quickly sear off some steak with plenty of flavour.
This cut of ribeye with added garlic and parsley look impressive, with a seam of the simple, classic flavouring sitting between the main steak and hanger flank. It also tastes delicious he has been known to take some home himself!
Butcher & Grill is an unusual concept, a shop and restaurant combined, that is likely to become increasingly common, bearing in mind the economics involved. Anything that does not sell in the shop can be served up as a special in the restaurant. "We had some gammon that we gave to the chefs and they sorted it out as a takeaway dish with chips fantastic," says Heath.
Likewise, diners can come to the counter if they want an extra-large steak. Heath has been working as a butcher for 23 years, at the now-defunct Dewhurst, as well as on the meat counters at Tesco, Asda and Waitrose. But he loves the fact that the Butcher & Grill sources all its meat veal and game apart from one place.
The company belongs to entrepreneur Simon Tindall, formerly chairman of Michael Heseltine's Haymarket Publishing Group. He owns a farm in East Sussex where his cows, sheep and pigs are aged for 30 days-plus and quartered before being sent to Heath. Opening initially in Battersea in south-west London in 2006, a second venue launched in Wimbledon two years later, and Heath is head butcher for both.n
Forerib of beef4kg
8 garlic cloves, crushed with a little salt. Or 50g garlic paste
8 tbsp chopped parsley, or 40g dried parsley
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