The Beef Cutters
7 great old-style butchers
Butchers who still age, custom-cut, and share their recipes are few and far between these days. Regulations and industry consolidation make it more complicated now, but here are some old-school meat guys who know their way around a side of beef, plus a newcomer locavore.
Crisfield’s Prime Meat Market (61 Purchase St, Rye 914-967-0152) Prime meats, custom-cutting, house-made sausage, and respected brands such as Niman Ranch and D’Artagnan have created a devoted clientele here over the years. Personal service and prepared accompaniments help, too.
Hemlock Hill (500 Croton Ave, Cortlandt Manor 914-737-2810) One of the last farms left in Westchester raises its own animals, custom-butchers, and cuts. You can buy whole sides and other large quantities to freeze (such as a one-quarter side of beef) but only at its farm store. Find also organic chicken, turkey, and grain- and hay-fed pork and lamb.
Karl Ehmer (2022 Saw Mill River Rd, Yorktown Heights 914-962-3202) Many people still swear by this chain of butcher shops, known for Old World German-style cured meats and sausages. They carry cuts of fresh meat as well.
Mini Prime Meats (15 Park Pl, Bronxville 914-779-1948) Butcher Paul Chietro learned at his dad’s knee in their shop in Fleetwood. Fans love the great side dishes to take home from the pristine shop and get lots of help with cooking and custom-cutting.
Pilone’s Market (109 Gainsborg Ave, West Harrison 914-948-0880) Silver Lake is an old-fashioned neighborhood and this is the corner market for staples as well as meat. Try homemade sausage and Italian “gravy.” On the weekends, you can talk meat with Mario Pilone, too.
Table Local Market (11 Babbitt Rd, Bedford Hills 914-241-0269; tablelocalmarket.com) It’s not a butcher shop, but Table offers limited access (call to reserve) to sourced meat from upstate farms. The beef, lamb, chicken, and pork is raised responsibly and sustainably. Jon Pratt, of Peter Pratt’s Inn, is executive chef.
Village Prime Meats (475 Main St, Armonk 914-273-5222) This accommodating shop carries other gourmet supplies as well and does a brisk holiday business. It carries some grass-fed meats.