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Lady and Sons (Butcher) = Disappointing

I read on another thread about good Toronto butcher shops and Lady and Sons was suggested to be the place that filled the void of good butcher shops in riverdale/leslieville. I was eager to go, because I too believe we are lacking in that area.

My experience was disappointing:
1) I wanted some sausage casing. Figure a good butcher shop should have that on hand, but nope. Not this one.
2) I wanted a piece of beef chuck for a pot roast. No dice. But wait a second, they had some in the back. A large chunk of meat (vaccuum packed) came out of the back room. I didn't pay much attention to the piece of meat (my own fault there) and asked for three pounds. They cut it packed it. I got sticker shock at the $20 price tag, but figured it's organic and better quality so bite the bullet. When I get home and unwrap the thing, lo and behold, it's actually four big slices of flank steak, one on top of the other, each cut in half. I feel pretty damn stupid for not having looked closer, but it was Sunday and I was hungover.

The quality of the meat was fine and the rest of the selection looked pretty high quality. Not a problem there. But a second rate experience due to lack of sausage casing and the Chuck F**k up. Complaining about the sausage casing might be a stretch, but I think that's a little detail that separates the wheat from the chaff.

Does anyone have other suggestions around the area? I'm a big fan of Jerry's Supermarket on Danforth, between coxwell and greenwood on the norht side. Old school butchershop/grocery story. Starting to sell organics.

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  1. I actually had a great experience with the "Lady' of Lady & Son- she had a cut of meat that I hadn't found at two other spots, and when I told her what I was cooking, she threw in a couple of extra pieces to assist with the stewing. Don't write them off- there isn't much else in the neighbourhood, especially organic! I think you should go back and talk to the owner.

    1. I, too, have had positive experiences at Lady & Son. I think the reason I've had such good luck is because I've always talked to "Lady" about what it was I was planning to cook. She'd then make recommendations/suggestions accordingly. Also, as she's been getting to know me, she's been great about sending me home with new things - for free - just to get feedback or introduce me to a cut or type of meat I've not tried before. For the first time, I feel like I'm building a relationship with a butcher and actually learning some things. Anyway, do give her another chance, if you can.

      1 Reply
      1. re: seeldee

        I guess my review was a little harsh. Bu when "lady" isn't around, she should have people there that know the difference between chuck and flank steak.

        I believe in supporting the independents, so I'll probably return.

      2. Soon there will be another butcher shop to try out...

        Rowe Farm's is coming to Queen and Logan, March 1st (ish)

        All natural meats, good web site.

        2 Replies
        1. re: LvilleLocal

          Really? That's great news. It's March 5 at this writing but I haven't been out and about in the 'hood the past week. Does anyone know if Rowe's is open yet?

          1. re: DishyDiva

            Went past yesterday and it looks likes something is finally happening inside but definitely not open.

        2. I have had nothing but great service and great cuts of meat from Lady & Son. Service is heartfelt and top notch. She will also be adding fresh produce come spring which will be very welcome do to the dearth of grocers in Leslieville. As far as Rowe Farms goes I don't think its much to get excited about. Its not the same as it used to be when it was just John running things. Does anyone know for sure if Rowe Farms uses local sources of meats only or is their US beef coming in now?

          1. Bought some stewing beef from them a few weeks ago to put in a curry and I just ate it last night. It was pretty good, but definitely NOT worth the extra $5 a pound it cost for the organic label. I will in future be going back to Strickland's on Greenwood @ Gerrard for my stewing beef.

            1. My husband and I have been to Lady and Son several times and had nothing but fantastic service and excellent quality meat each visit. The friendly greeting, the generous samples and the warm fuzzy feelings generated from supporting a local business will keep us loyal customers.

              3 Replies
              1. re: TeeCee73

                Hey TeeCee, you obviously feel strongly about Lady & Son to make it the focus of your very first post. Look forward to hearing your comments about the other local business you support as a loyal customer.

                1. re: JamieK

                  Hmmm... not sure if this is a subtle way of suggesting that I may be somewhat biased in my review of Lady and Son.

                  So-- rest assured, I'm no plant. I live in Leslieville and am definitely a proud supporter of the quality local businesses in the area.

                  I'm really sorry to report that when I walked my dog past Lady and Son yesterday, the window was papered over and a sign was up stating that they were closed due to illness, but are planning to relocate.

                  We've been travelling a bit, so hadn't been in for a while, but did pick up some excellent filet mignon (yes, it's pricey, but very good) just 2 weeks ago.

                  1. re: TeeCee73

                    This doesn't sound too good...A couple of weeks ago, I received an invitation to their first anniversary "do" due to happen this coming weekend, BBQ and all...I was looking forward to it. I do hope they get to stay! Anyone has more info?

              2. Unfortunately, they will not be re-opening in the immediate area. They are looking at moving over to Queen and Broadview. The owner (Voula) is ill, but is expected to make a full recovery and with Bobby (the Son) off at University, there was no option but to close. They are moving because the butcher shop across the street mainly – they poached most of the customers with their really low prices. I loved Lady and Son and will miss them greatly.

                2 Replies
                1. re: frenched13

                  Sad to see them go (I hope something equally nice opens in the space) but when I went in there I got shoddy service. "Son" didn't know the price of what I wanted to buy, it took him 10 minutes to figure it out, and then he told me it was an outrageous price. I walked out.

                  1. re: Mintycake

                    That's too bad. I am a proper meatavore and I've never gotten a better steak than the ones I'd get from there.