How it all Began
by Dan Gordon
March 1, 2017
When I was out promoting the Whisky & Spice mustards at various markets and shops it was very common for people to ask how I got started.
I would apologize for it being a bit of a long story but would try to explain as succinctly as possible that it all started in the fall of 2012 when Whisky & Spice was born as a blog to showcase my food photography.
I approached what was then Sausage Partners butcher shop in Leslieville and asked if they would be interested in me doing a behind the scenes, editorial photo project on butchering.
They generously agreed.
Since that time the shop has been sold to Olliffe’s but I will always be thankful to Lorraine and Kyle Deming of Sausage Partners for being so kind and letting me get in their way with my camera.
Below I have published the original blog copy from the summer of 2012 along with the photos from the project.
Sausage Partners – Advanced Butchering
I’m sure there are some people that won’t find many of these images pleasing to look at. I can understand why and that’s okay.
After processing a few of the pig butchering photos, I mentioned to Lorraine Deming of Sausage Partners that there’s a certain amount of gore to the images and in the work that they do. She said that was a side of their work that they didn’t mind showing. It’s just the reality of what butchering is. It’s what they do every day. I respect her attitude.
For most of us, we only know meat in the way that it’s presented to us – usually on some kind of foam tray looking all neat and tidy or as a completed dish. But it doesn’t grow on trees that way. An animal needs to be slaughtered and cut up. There’s going to be a certain amount of blood and guts that goes along with that.
But if we can look beyond a little gore, what we’ll find is a lot of hard work, skill and an art form. I believe that every chef is an artist and every artist has their medium. Butchers are no different. They train, practise and use their knives to sculpt succulent cuts of meat that many of us crave and enjoy.
I understand that pondering the death and dismemberment of your favourite foods may not be the most pleasant of experiences but without the sacrifice of an animal and the skill and hard work of a butcher there would be no finger lickin’ ribs, porterhouse steaks or leg of lamb for any of us to enjoy.
You can also make the choice to support butchers like Sausage Partners that select only local, free range, chemical free meats. The animals live happy, healthy lives, free from abuse and are slaughtered using humane standards.
Thank you to Sausage Partners for letting me get in the way with my camera. I found the entire process fascinating and I learned a lot along the way.