While Texans across the Lone Star State talk about turkey, carving, and devouring strategies, one of the most respected publications in the country is about singling out a handful of butchers in Texas as the best in the country, including two in Austin.
Food & Wine recently published its list of the Best Butcher Shops and Meat Markets in America, adding Austin’s Dai Due Butcher Shop & Supper Club and Salt & Time as top favorites.
The list of almost 100 butchers is a real “cut of meat” of the mind. It includes classic shops from a century as well as more modern meat markets that focus on sustainability and artisanal offerings.
“There was a very clear standard: the more sustainable, the more rebellious against the prevailing winds in a morally corrupt industry, the better,” notes Food & Wine about the selected butchers.
Dai Due, known for its hyper-local and seasonal approach, is “one of the best restaurants in Austin [and] one of the best butcher shops in Texas, ”says Food & Wine. The publication claims the store is indispensable to the regional food scene.
Despite the pandemic, the Food & Wine awards will take place in a busy year for both butchers. Salt & Time Chef Ben Runkle recently opened The Butcher’s Burger, which offers a range of drool-worthy burgers, including Salt & Time’s best-selling classic burger and one-of-a-kind lamb and pork burgers. And Dai Due boss Jesse Griffiths has just announced that he will soon publish his second book, The Hog Book, a kind of textbook for dressing and slaughtering wild pigs with photos by renowned Texan photographer Jody Horton. Griffiths hopes to self-publish the book in the spring of 2021 as a Kickstarter campaign is running to raise funds for the project.
While Food & Wine recognition is welcome, Austinites have long known the meaty delights of either butcher shop. In fact, Dai Due and Salt & Time have already sold out their pre-order offers for Thanksgiving, even though Salt & Time is still open for walk-in service.
Other nearby Texas butcher shops featured on Food & Wine’s list include Dziuks Meat Market in Castroville, Wiatreks Meat Market in Poth, Bellville Meat Market, and Thorndale Meat Market. Deep cuts from Dallas and Kuby’s Sausage House were also on the list.