I had lunch in a butcher shop (and the about why red meat is not over)
We say Milan innovative in the food trends field, I believe it stays a bit mainstream compared to some capitals like London, Paris, Copenhagen or Istanbul.
So after the Burger 15 years ago, the Nippo-Brazilian sushi, and more recently the Neapolitan pizza, and the poke mania, 2019 was the year of natural wine bars.
There is a trend though, that no one was expecting in a world claiming vegan awareness, the trend for meat restaurants.
Though the openings do not lie, El Carnicero is opening the third, El Porteno opened 2 new restaurants last year, and last month, everyone was talking about Salt Bae venue in Milan, here to open a grill restaurant.
So why red meat is not over?
I did a study in 2016 about the future of the butcher shops.
What I saw is that, while there is a trend for fit people to eat only white meat (chicken mainly: less fat, less prone to cancer), the other people will privileged mono portions, already seasoned/ready to cook and vacuumed.
Why? Well in a capital like Milan, people tend to live in smaller apartments, with unadapted kitchen, and prefer to eat outside the smelly or long preparation foods (grilled meat, fried food, pizza).
People will also tend to eat less meat, but when they eat it ,they want to eat something tasty and juicy.
In countries like the UK, France or Portugal, it’s been years now that you can eat meat in some butcher shops. In Milan, the historic Macelleria Pellegrini is known only by a few but still a tasty experience if you’re ready to eat standing.
So after the rise of Macelleria Popolare who has been proposing meat only grass fed, some restaurants popped out: macelleria RC first then a Viking restaurant, and beginning of 2019, COOD which I don’t even know if still opened: they wanted to propose unusual meat like kangaroos …
In parallel, there were some initiatives to democratize the meat trend, notably thanks to the opening of Macellerie Urbani who had to change its format because the mass market was not completely ready: from ageing meat to vacuum meat, from a trendy name to a recognizable name (Joe Cipolla). Does it mean people eating meat in Milan want to eat it in high level restaurant? Why a format making you feel like home and having lunch with well cooked meat at a good price would not work? People still think meat is heavy to digest? People looks for trusted source?
Well the opening of new Argentineans restaurants could confirm that theory. Though mine, is that I often get pissed off when I go in a standard restaurant and have to pay 30€ for a not well cooked steak.
In that case, I prefer to go in places dedicated to meat that will gather both the tools and the skills to cook it properly. But above all, if I take the example of the first born Carnicero, I get transported by the atmosphere and feel in mindfulness for a couple of hours each time I go there.
My fave meats places:
. Trattoria Trippa for organs meat.
. Trattoria del Nuovo Macello for cotoletta alla milanese.
. El Carnicero for parillas.
. Joe Cippola in mercato del Suffragio, Fratelli Torcinelli, Macelleria Popolare in Navigli and Macelleria Pellegrini for a tasty lunch.