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Flavour Report with Derek Goforth: Launching new Butcher’s Block venture with visit to Mick Davey Butchers

Derek GoforthGeraldton Guardian
A sample of produce from Mick Davey Butchers.
Camera IconA sample of produce from Mick Davey Butchers. Credit: Derek Goforth

There are a few Geraldton institutions, landmarks, people and businesses that just scream Geraldton.

On the business front, Mick Davey Butchers must sit high up on that list.

Established in 1908 and describing itself as a “one-stop butcher shop”, it is well known throughout the region.

So what better place to start my new Flavour Report venture — The Butcher’s Block.

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Over the course of the next few months I will be dipping into the fresh food marketplace of Geraldton and paying particular attention to our local butchers, both ancient and recently established.

Mick Davey Butchers is conveniently situated on the high street, with plenty of parking options, but you might have a little walk if you go during peak business hours.

From the moment I walked in I felt looked after. I asked what they recommended and about 20 minutes later they finished running through their fantastic selection of local produce and hand-made treats.

I tried my very hardest to test their patience with question after question but to no avail: both of the butchers were more than happy to chat and seemed genuinely proud of every product.

We opted to walk away with some Yanget steaks, barbecue pork belly, breakfast sausages, chicken hasselback (chicken breast stuffed with cream cheese, bacon, fresh herbs and mozzarella cheese) and chicken Maryland (marinated in sun dried tomato, olives, fresh parsley, cracked pepper, salt and breadcrumb mix). Both the chicken options were handmade on site.

Phil Williams and Jacqui Reay from Mick Davey Butchers.
Camera IconPhil Williams and Jacqui Reay from Mick Davey Butchers. Credit: Derek Goforth

This was to feed a family of four over a couple of days. Coming in at just over $70, it was great value, especially considering the weight of the bag as I carried it out.

To start with, the steaks — just wow. Tender and packed with flavour, we reverse-seared them simply in butter and a generous seasoning of salt and a sprinkle of pepper. Both the scotch and porterhouse were cooked medium and were packed with flavour and so juicy.

We cooked the sausages simply — again just fried in a little butter — and these were mostly gobbled up by the kids, but the adults got a couple of bites too. The natural casing really gave them a great texture and the sausage meat itself was simple and juicy. The flavours were not overly complex, but that’s what we asked for for our slightly fussy youngest eater.

The two chicken offerings were just wonderful, with so many different flavours that all seemed to complement each other well. The Maryland was my personal fave, with an Italian twist of olives, tomato and parsley. My normally reserved oldest boy loved the Hasselbacks, which were all done in the oven until nicely browned, giving the cream cheese a lovely nutty flavour.

But everyone’s winner was the pork belly slices, which I am told come from free range pigs in Kusha Hill in Dalwallinu. We slow cooked them then finished them on the barbecue to give them a nice crispy finish. The tenderness and subtle smokey flavour was something we won’t forget in a hurry.

What a great start to this Butcher’s Block adventure. I would absolutely return to Mick Davey Butchers.

There was a Yanget rib joint that screamed Sunday roast to us. We just need to find a dozen or so friends to hep us eat it!

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