Life of snags rewarding for butcher

Mick Metcalf, of Metcalf Quality Meats in Evans Head, with his award-winning sausages.
Mick Metcalf, of Metcalf Quality Meats in Evans Head, with his award-winning sausages. Jay Cronan

WITH the title of two of the best varieties of sausages in the Northern Rivers under his belt Mick Metcalf, of the Evans Head-based Metcalf Quality Meats, is off to the great NSW snag off.

Mr Metcalf, who has been making sausages since he left school in 1980, won the best snag in the traditional pork and continental categories in the Far North Coast at the recent Australian Meat Industry Council awards.

“It's a great compliment to the staff and the effort they put in,” Mr Metcalf said.

“It goes to show we are doing the right thing and keeping up the standard when we could just make the cheap and nasty ones.”

Ballina butcher Troy Daley, of Daley's Gourmet Meats, picked up a silver for his gourmet sausages.

However it is only the first place winners who will compete in the State championship in October.

So what is the secret of making a great snag?

“Good fresh meat,” Mr Metcalf said. “We don't try and cheat by using rubbish.”

He said one of his advantages was the ability to get consistently good quality meat from local farmers.

Last year his business won the best pork, and was named third for its bratwurst continental sausage.

“We did better this year, so who knows what the State championship holds,” Mr Metcalf said.

He said he would be up against strong competition from Sydney-based butchers who cater for a more multicultural and innovative palate.

Metcalf Quality Meats focuses on what locals want, not their city cousins.

The national championship, consisting of the state winners, will be held on the Gold Coast early next year.

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