1. Why doesn't the Shop redeem my Gift Certificate?
2. What is West Side Beef?
West Side Beef is a meat share program that gives you access to the benefits of whole animal cookery, offering the best quality, pricing, and value. We have access to the best and freshest farm raised meat in Ontario, and the skills to know what to do with it. Through our website and online community, we fill orders based on demand for fresh and ethically farm raised meat. Once an order has been filled, we source, expertly butcher, we contact our local farmers and order in chicken, pigs and steer for butchering and portioning. We started with Beef but have since grown to offer Chicken and Pork because of high demand from our loyal customers.
3. Who are we?
You might be surprised, but we’re actually chefs! West Side Beef is owned and operated by Richmond Station, a bustling neighbourhood restaurant in downtown Toronto. At Richmond Station, we buy all our meat in whole and butcher it on premises in our meat locker. We have a team of young cooks that have been trained in whole animal rail style butchery, and we have a custom meat locker where we do all the cutting and packaging. This is a rare set-up for a restaurant, but as an ingredient-focused restaurant, we know the best ingredients come right from the source. With West Side Beef, we get to share that source with you!
4. How does this work?
The idea is a simple one: provide great beef, chicken, and pork at a fair price. Our system gives you access to the benefits of buying directly from the farmer without the complications that arise from having to butcher, store, and eat all that meat yourself. We believe in ethical treatment of animals, in supporting local farmers, and in treating customers fairly. We also believe in deliciousness.
5. Is meat sharing expensive?
We don’t think so. One of the reasons we started WSB was because we didn’t feel there were many places to get good quality beef at a fair price. Sustainable food isn’t just an environmental term. If good food isn’t economically sustainable then we haven’t really changed anything in the long run. Consider that stewing beef of comparable quality goes for around $11/pound and strip loin or ribeye steaks can be over $25/pound. Our beef share will range in price from $8/lbs to $10/lbs depending on the yield, and while that it can be inconvenient to plan and budget for, this reality is true for farmers as well. We work hard to provide great value, and so also make sausage, provide rendered fat and make a rich stock for you at no extra charge. We think it’s a great value and we hope you will too.
6. Is the meat frozen or fresh?
The meat in your order is always fresh on the day of pick up/delivery. While it’s intended for your freezer, we always sell it to you fresh so that you know how recently the meat was processed. Selling the meat fresh also means that you can use your favourites right away and save the rest for later!
7. Will I need a chest freezer to store this in?
Probably not, it takes up less room than most people think. It will easily fit in a 2 cubic foot freezer (the one attached to your fridge) with room left for ice cubes, beer glasses and Mr. Freezies.
8. How long will my order last in the freezer?
Because the individual cuts have been vac-packed, your order will last six months in the freezer.
9. Can I go and visit the farm myself?
Yes, absolutely. We visit our farms all the time and encourage you to do the same. Fill out our contact form and we’ll send you a list with maps and phone numbers so you can make a day of it.