For those who bemoan the closing of the excellent butcher shop Lindy & Grundy, there’s a new storefront for grass-fed, antibiotic-free meats: Le French Butcher.
Master butcher Jean-Claude Setin and his wife Susan, who have been operating out of farmers’ market stalls, including Larchmont’s, not only want to bring quality cuts to Los Angeles, but aim to create the kind of welcoming atmosphere common to shops in Jean-Claude’s native France.
“The difference between a French butcher and an American butcher is the approach with a customer,” Jean-Claude explains. “They want to know, ‘Can you give me a good way to cook this? Give me a recipe for the best taste.’ In a supermarket, no one talks with you. In France my customers became my family.” There’s also a difference in the way the animal is broken down. French butchers waste very little meat. “There’s meat behind a cow’s hip joint. Americans don’t bother with it. I carefully cut it out. It’s called ‘oyster’ steak: small, but very tender.”
Susan explains their mission. “People want to know where their food comes from. We’re bringing 100 percent grass-fed and pasture-raised meat, all California grown and cut from whole carcasses. Our motto is ‘Healthy, delicious, sane and humane.’”
The shop offers beef, lamb, pork and poultry; also sausage and paté made in-house by charcutier Pierre Chanet. They carry artisanal jams, rubs and imported cheeses. In the interest of building community and educating the public, Le French Butcher holds classes and demonstrations. For those with a serious interest in butchery, classes range from the Dec. 3 $300 “Going Half-Hog” where participants (limited to six) break down a hog into cuts, to a private $425 “Day with a Butcher.”
“We want to help create community,” Jean-Claude sums up. “Out of great food comes great community, great communication, great things.”
Le French Butcher is at 6015 W. Third St. 323-525-0306. lefrenchbutcher.com. Closed Mondays; Tues.-Sat. 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sun. to 5 p.m.
By Helene Seifer. Contact Helene at email@example.com.