Approaching its two year anniversary this September, Windsor Meats Co. is a neighbourhood butcher shop located at 2276 East Hastings Street. They specialize in free range, organic and hormone free meats of the finest quality, with a wide variety of gourmet sauces, vinegars and syrups also available. With locations established around the lower mainland since 1946, the friendly butcher brand has become synonymous with premium, top of the line cuts and harder to find buys, from fresh elk, venison, and bison. “We can pretty much get anything,” David tells us, who has been working as butcher with the company for six years now, and has been at the Hastings shop since day one. “We get yach from merit, wild boar, and ostrich from Alberta.” Basically, if you can’t find it at Windsor, good luck finding it all. Starting out as a butcher in the grocery industry, David has been crafting his skills for well over a decade. But after years of corporate operations, he says it was the lack of creativity that ultimately led to his search for a change. “I was a manager for Thrifty Foods, it was corporate and (there was) not much creativity was involved with that job,” David says. “I was looking for a change, and a small meat shop was growing and I came in and changed a whole bunch of stuff, selling a bunch of new products, and sourcing from local farms, and it grew from there. I have learned a lot from just working for the company. I have creative control of what we do – and that concept is great. It’s the best part of (being with) the company, to be creative and learn.” When we ask David if he has a few barbecuing know-how to share with us, he says there’s a few basics to success. “Just don’t overcook the meat,” David says. “Leaner cuts I would go rarer or blue-rare. I always bring it up to room temperature first, before putting it on the grill. If you’re cooking blue-rare or medium-rare, bring it to room temperature then fire it on the hottest grill you can possibly get. Get that sear on both sides, then let it rest and go to town.” When we ask if David has a fave to cook on the grill, he says Hanger or skirt steak are his top picks. “They have really nice flavour and texture; Different than a rib eye. I find it a lot more flavourful than many original cuts.” Check out Windsor Meat Co. if you’re looking to spice up your average barbecue night, or any night of the week you might be looking for something a little extra special for dinner. Visit their website for more info, and don’t forget to stay social on Twitter for the latest.