If the cooks on your gift list have been very nice this year, you may want to return the favor and get some really nice gifts to thank them.
Not if you travel to Rodriguez Butcher Supply on the west side. The store at 1715 W. Commerce St. has been around for decades now, as you can tell from some of the historic photos that grace the walls. But in the recent past, the family has added a kitchen supply business that has attracted some of the top chefs in town. (Check out the store’s Facebook page, and you’ll find a banner featuring Robbie Nowlin, Jason Dady and Stefan Bowers, “rock stars” of the city’s culinary scene, says Philip Fickel, whose family has run the store for several generations.)
Everyone who loves chefs knives will be attracted to the dazzling along one wall of the store. From Wusthof and Henckels to Nora and even blades from Austin and San Antonio, you’ll find what you’re looking for and at a prices that I couldn’t quite believe. Ask Fickel for help in deciding what’s best for beginners or trained professionals, what works best for cutting sashimi or vegetables as well as beef, pork and boning fowl. There’s even an oyster shucker for smaller New England bivalves; it comes with a beer bottle opener as part of the blade.
You can also sign up for knife sharpening classes and get the tools to keep your blades’ edges cutting efficiently.
Don’t just stop for knives, however. Rodriguez has plenty of other kitchen items, such as pots and pans as well as butcher equipment, including meat slicers, tenderizers, hooks and saws. Plus, if you want to stuff your own sausage, no matter whether you’re using venison, lobster or pork, you’ll find seasonings and cures as well as casings and stuffers.
And if you want to start cooking sous vide, you’ll find what you need there as well.
Check out some of the inventory at homebutcher.com. But don’t just shop this local business online. Go over to the store and let Fickel, his family or any of the staff help you out. You never know what you’re going to find.