The Local Butcher Shop in North Berkeley’s Gourmet Ghetto is the place to go if you’re looking for local, sustainable and humanely raised meat–or just a delicious and well-prepared sandwich!
The Local Butcher Shop (TLBS) has the right idea when it comes to eating meat that you can feel good about (in terms of its origin and its taste). Owners Aaron and Monica Rocchino opened TLBS in 2011, hoping to have a direct relationship with the community. They wanted to provide local and sustainable meat for home cooks in Berkeley. The shop utilizes “whole butchering,” a process in which every scrap of meat and bone is used.
In addition to traditional cuts of meat, TLBS also prepares soup stocks, dog food and soaps from the inedible portions of the animal. All of the meat is raised within 150 miles of the store, and the folks at TLBS have direct relationships with these farmers, so there are no middle men.
All of TLBS’s meat is free from antibiotics and hormones. The Rocchinos review each farm they buy meat from and focus on positive animal husbandry and sustainable land management. For example, a farm will grow feed for cows, harvest the feed and then release pigs into the fields to eat any scraps and dig up the earth for the next cycle of crops. The animals get time outdoors to roam and munch, and the land gets tilled and fertilized naturally. It’s an ingenious system!
TLBS has a spacious, bright and clean storefront in North Berkeley, just around the corner from Philz Coffee and Cheeseboard. The meats in the display case looked so fresh; they would be any home chef’s dream to cook up. Service is friendly and helpful, with employees wearing fun aprons and hats and creating an overall welcoming atmosphere.
TLBS sells a special “Sando of the Day.” Look at this beautiful sandwich:
The turkey was moist, and all of the other ingredients highlighted the turkey as the star of the sandwich. I would never have thought to put squash in a sandwich, but its sweetness and texture paired well with the rest. The condiments weren’t too overpowering and the bread was fluffy and fresh. And there was something neat about knowing that the bread came from down the street at Acme Bread. This Sando was extremely well-thought-out, making for a delicious sandwich.
The Local Butcher Shop stands as an incredible example of creating a community-based solution for a local need. It’s a great place both to purchase meat and grab a quick and tasty lunch.
Location: 1600 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709
Hours of Operation: Mon-Fri 10am to 7pm, Sat-Sun 10am to 6pm