Saugatuck Craft Butchery and Cafe

by April Guilbault

Saugatuck Craft Butchery and Cafe in Westport, two years young, has recently moved to a larger space and doubled its size to include a restaurant.What began as an urban couple’s desire to source and provide the community with top quality meats from humanly raised animals within a 100 mile radius, is now a destination for epicureans and locavores alike.

The new space stretches to 2,000 square feet, “nose-to-tail.” One half of the store, which somehow feels vintage and brand-new at once, is the much-adored butcher shop. With sprawling cases and plenty of room for customers, the offerings are more copious than ever with three whole steer coming through the door each week.

A selection of sausages and cured meats at the butchery

Here you will find classic cuts of beef, poultry, pork, and lamb, along with lesser-known and less expensive “butcher cuts”. Not sure how to prepare them? Ask the butcher or peruse one of the meat cookbooks that line their shelves. A quick dinner can be made with Craft’s specialty pork sausages like Irish bangers, “Pizza,” and Maple Breakfast, and beef sausages including Philly Cheesesteak and Double Bacon Cheeseburger. Cured, smoked and prepared meats range from tasso, smoked ham, and speck, to pancetta, pork rillette, and pate.

The frozen case at Craft is stocked with stews and stocks ready for reheating.

Several frozen and refrigerated cases stock a wide variety of foods that make for quick meals at home. There are (frozen) ground meats, sausages, and meatballs as well as stock (just in time for cold/flu season!), Southwest Chili, Sloppy Joe Mix, and Green Chili with pulled pork, even compound butters like red wine-gorgonzola, chipotle-lime, and wasabi-ginger. Coming up next: a case stocked with fresh takeaway food.

Select local and organic specialty grocery items round out Craft’s offerings including organic meat rubs, sauces, salts, peppers, and pickles. Vowing to source locally, their assortment of local goods includes eggs from Speckled Rooster Farm, single nectar source honeys from Red Bee Honey, Olivette‘s extra virgin olive oils, and USDA organic Doc’s Maple Syrup. Cookbooks, especially those dedicated solely to cooking meats, handmade wooden cutting boards, and a good selection of Victorinox Swiss Army knives also grace the shelves.

a cafe table at Craft

As you round the bend of this L-shaped establishment, you will find its newest offering – The Cafe at Saugatuck Craft Butchery. Seats line a long window inside, and outside seating will come soon. A short menu of  creative sandwiches and salads includes a ham and smoked gouda sandwich with caramelized onions, slow roasted Berkshire porcetta with bacon spread and pickled turnips, Asian beef salad of roast beef, crispy broccoli, noodles and a soy vinaigrette, and a kale salad with roasted butternut squash.

Raised beds at Craft provide greens like soft lettuces and nasturtium for salads

If you’ve never bought Craft’s incredible ground beef for burgers at home, this is the place to try one made to order with optional house-smoked bacon and cheese on a buttery brioche bun. Even though this is a haven for carnivores, salad greens are cut from raised beds growing right outside Craft’s doors. Menus change weekly so check for updates on Craft’s website.

The Cafe is in the midst of creating its own identity and, like the butchery, strives to utilize the whole animal when cooking, as well as source locally. As the Cafe and Butcher Shop function side-by-side a unique synergy is forming, something that few butchers (local butchers being a rarity) can offer.

580 Riverside Drive, Westport, CT (203) 226-6328 or visit their website.

Butchery Hours: Tuesday – Friday 11:00am – 7:00pm; Saturday, 10:00am – 7:00pm, and Sunday 10:00am – 5:00pm. Closed Monday.

Cafe Hours: Tuesday – Friday 11:00am – 3:00pm; Saturday breakfast 9:00am – 3:00pm. On Saturdays burgers are served from noon to 3:00pm. Cafe closed Sunday and Monday.

This Sunday, October 13, come celebrate Craft’s 2nd birthday with a bash! The party on the Craft patio includes a BBQ with their burgers and sausages, tunes and beer. BYOB welcome.

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