The Butcher Situation

The topic of an upcoming column, Columbia’s sad lack of a butcher shop remains as vexing today as it did when I whined about it first – nearly a year ago. A place with authority and gravitas and mountains of meat sold by men who know what the hell they’re talking about. I don’t mean the guy at Hy-Vee. Try as they might, it’s not the same and you come to know this the moment you ask about options the far side of the ribeye. They serve a suburban clientele, most of whom are fully content with pedestrian fare. That’s fine, but I want more.

I’ve found it in Jeff City. Weber Meat Market on Missouri Boulevard. The owner had a) actually heard of hanger steak and b) would sell me one the next time he butchered a beef, and c) followed through. Tonight, half dry-aged for ten days in the fridge, it was delicious. Beefy, robust, chewy. Awesome. And still, no butcher in Columbia. It’s a damned shame.


Author: Scott

I am a married father of two. I graduated from Rock Bridge High School and then Mizzou before spending six years in the Washington, D.C. area. We returned to Columbia, Missouri in 2006.

7 thoughts

  1. Carrollton has a new meat-only shop on HWY 65. I’ve never been, but I’ve heard first-rate things about it. Stop by if work ever brings you thru God’s country.

  2. I have driven by Weber several times and thought about stopping in. What was there meat selection like on a daily basis (ie not making a special order)?

  3. I’ve wondered as well about Weber’s in Jeff City. the MIL lives in Jeff and she’s never been either. I think the hubby and I need to pay a visit?

  4. Used to work in Jeff City, and Weber’s is definitely worth it. Great service and good product, you can’t ask for much more.

  5. Anon, the selection is excellent. Everything from bone-in/bone-out chicken breast to goat meat. I heartily recommend a visit…but come with a cooler.

    It’s not the 100% antiseptic experience of a Hy-Vee – a bit dark-seeming if all you’re used to is the overlit grocery store experience – but they take pride in what they do and, at least so far, have delivered a good product.

  6. Scott -not sure I understand your need for asepsis …. I’ve been there when Roger and Chris are shutting down and washing and dismantling the equipment, and it’s as clean as anything I’ve ever seen.

    That having been said, this is my go-to place for meat. And seafood. Just call ahead, before he’s put in his order with the purveyor, and you can have mussels, salmon (whole sides … good for gravlax), and recently I got a whole loin of tuna.

    When I wanted to make my own lard for Bayless recipe tamales, I got Roger to save me pork fat trimmings. When I make Christmas puddings, I get my suet (kidney suet) from them. Oh, and pork belly, too. (Although you may find it cheaper at Hong Kong Market.)

    They make their own bratwurst and Italian sausage (I recommend the apple brats). I believe they also make their own andouille, but it’s been a while since I asked. They may also smoke their own bacon, but again, it’s been a while since I inquired.

    I also buy my filet(s) there when I want to make carpaccio. And they also cut my Korean style shortribs — much thinner than the sorry ribs I bought at Sam’s on someone’s recommendation.

    I’m a fan!

  7. Alas, it is not in Columbia either, but Jennings Premium Meats, 125 East Broadway in New Franklin does a great job. Their bacon is out of this world. They have a butcher’s counter right in the store and great prices on “package deals” like grilling package which includes ground beef, steaks, etc. You just need a big freezer.

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