My favourite butcher is Jack O'Shea, who used to operate from a little treasure-trove of a shop in London's Knightsbridge, but who now works from Selfridges Food Hall. He sells the best-quality meat and fantastic cuts which always inspire me to try new recipes. His speciality is different cuts of beef.
The beef has an impressive provenance – it comes from the free-range, grass-fed Black Angus cattle from the pastures of south-west Ireland. The cattle are outside almost all the year, thanks to the mild climate. The beef is also free from hormones and artificial additives. My particular favourite is the amazing T-bone steak, which, when cooked well, is hard to beat.
My philosophy is to use incredible ingredients and cook them simply with love and care. But in addition to the premium cuts, the shop also does a fine line in cheaper cuts such as flank steak or hanger steak which are also of very high quality.
Jack also stocks all the classic breeds of lamb – depending on the season, it could be from Connemara, Shetland, Yorkshire and the Welsh valleys. The fact that the lamb is matured for up to 10 days before we cut it means that the meat is wonderfully tender.
The staff are always extremely helpful and charming to customers. Most importantly, they are always well educated about their products and can offer advice even to the most demanding of customers. You can also buy the meat online from their partner Natoora (natoora.co.uk, 020-7627 1600), which helps if you don't live in London.
Jack O'Shea, Selfridges Food Hall, London W1, 020-7318 3727; jackoshea.com
Mettricks Butchers in North Derbyshire are the online butchers of the year and are very reliable.
mettricksbutchers.co.uk; 01457 852 239
Donald Russell Britain's best-known online butchers are famed for their fabulous sausages.
donaldrussell.com; 01467 629666
The Parsons Nose in Worcestershire (though mainly mail order) for its great beef – and its butchery courses.
parsonsnose.co.uk; 020-7736 4492Reuse content