MARK GILLESPIE/Livingston County News
Owners Les and Matt Cole, with store manager Mike Lord, at the new Meat and Seafood Company in Lakeville.
‘Meat and Seafood Co.’: A name that says it all
The name of the company is all you need to know about what’s behind the counter.
“The Meat and Seafood Company,” across from Les and Matt Cole’s “North Shore Grill” on Route 20A in Lakeville, is a throwback to the days when every town had its own butcher shop and fish market.
The market, along with the North Shore Grill — Lakeville Grain Elevator and Caledonia’s Commodity Resource Corporation — is the father and son’s fourth business in Livingston County.
“We’re going to offer customers good value on their fresh meats and fish, and better service than they get in other places,” said Les Cole. “We’ll have recipes, preparation tips and solutions for people’s party needs.”
To meet this goal, the Coles hired Mike Lord, a butcher with 42 years experience — including a stint in Heidelberg, Germany where he worked in U.S. military commissaries. Lord, who is the store’s manager, remembers how Germans liked to select the thickness of their cuts — much like Americans buy cold cuts. He also appreciated the variety of sausages on hand — and hopes to recreate a little of that experience in Lakeville.
“Europeans tend to shop daily in small amounts,” said Lord. “If they’re buying a chuck roast, they’ll be offered a whole shoulder.”
Lord has developed sausage recipes of his own, including a regular offering of Italian sausage and other types which will be rotated seasonally. “Every month, you’ll see a different kind of sausage.”
The Meat and Seafood Market will also offer 8-10 types of fresh fish. Curious customers can find recipe cards near the cash register for tips to take them from the butcher’s counter to their dinner table.
The market is supplied by Palmer Food Market in Henrietta, which also provides fresh meat and fish served across the street at the North Shore Grill. On sale is “choice” Angus beef, the best grade commonly available in America.
(“Prime” Angus is also for sale in the U.S., but most Americans pass it up because of its fatty marbled texture.)
Les says some of the beef at the market will come from local farms. “We’ll sell meat from cattle I raised myself. The hay and corn I feed them is raised right in Livonia.”
Matt Cole says he and his father watched national trends before developing the new store a year ago.
“People are watching more cooking shows and a lot of menus at home now ask for products that aren’t available at the average supermarket,” he said.
“People are moving back toward small shops because they are beginning to place more value on the time they spend cooking and the ingredients they’re preparing.”
Matt points out that the shop offers a small selection of marinades and sauces that will complement the fresh product on hand in the refrigeration cases.
The Meat and Seafood Company is geared toward taking special orders — and providing direction to people when it can’t easily meet their needs.
“A young mother came in asking for hot dogs made without nitrates. Through our connections with producers in Livingston, Steuben and Allegany counties, we were able to point her toward a couple producers,” said Matt.
The Meat and Seafood Company, at 5857 Big Tree Road in Lakeville, is open Tuesday and Wednesday from noon to 7 p.m. and Thursday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The shop is closed on Mondays.