Hidden away in the depths of industrial Aberdeen lies a carnivore’s delight – The Butcher’s Club Deli – a private kitchen, lunchtime eatery and spacious events venue complete with an equally spacious rooftop providing beautiful views over Aberdeen Harbour. This meat-lover’s paradise is located on the 16th floor of the Shui Ki Industrial Building, alongside male fashion retailer ED1TUS, providing a laid back, cool and airy space akin to a converted warehouse in East London.
Built to help absorb the growing number of dry-aged steak fans who have been flocking to the restaurant group’s debut, The Butcher’s Club, its bigger sister offers more space for large parties as well as an intimate fourteen-person VIP dining suite, designed by fellow Aberdeen local, Casa Capriz. During the day, two lengthy school dining room style tables accommodate daytime patrons.
Settling down and ready for a meaty feast, I sampled a selection of dishes from the daytime deli menu, which attracts a host of local office workers each day. We kicked off the evening with a classic caesar salad, complete with Butcher’s Club Deli bacon, the sweet smell of which wafted up from the plate as soon as it hit the table. The meat looked more like a thick slice of boiled ham than your average slice of bacon and tasted equally as good too, whilst the remaining caesar ingredients added a creamy and crunchy touch.
Off to a tasty start, the salad was swiftly followed by the Deli Poutine, a Canadian dish consisting of chips, gravy and cheese, with an added protein of the Deli’s pastrami. The dish was warm, indulgent and with the addition of duck fat fries, frankly, downright naughty – the perfect comfort food!
The Butcher’s Board completed the starter course. A feast for the eyes and the stomach, the board was laden with a selection of cold meat delights, cheese, pickles and homemade bread. Of all the appetizers this was by far my favourite and I happily picked my way through the meat variations, which featured a scrumptious ham hock terrine and moreish homemade pork and beef sausages with a beer and horseradish infused mustard.
Starters over, it was time to delve into the heartier main dishes – fish and chips, dry aged steak, ale and wild mushroom pie and a New York-style corned beef sandwich with a side of crisps. Beginning with the fish, the battered barramundi tasted succulent, however, I would have preferred the batter a little crispier. The fish was naturally accompanied by those eye-popping duck fat fries again, traditional mushy peas, tomato ketchup and tartar sauce. Yum!
Onto the pie, the filling of which was of a perfect consistency and the mature taste of the meat really shone through. The little dash of accompanying gravy was really too little for my gravy guzzling habits, but that said the pie was perfectly moist on its own.
Now, to the corned beef sandwich. For those whom the words ‘corned beef’ conjure up images of tinned horribleness, think again. The Deli’s corned beef is fresh, tasty and with the homemade bread, makes a perfectly delightful sarnie. Plus, with the added packet of crisps – you can give your lunch that extra crunch if you wish. Not to be overlooked, the accompanying little red cabbage salad was scrummy – although for $120, I was a little disappointed at the overall size of the sandwich.
Now to the piece de resistance: the steak. Naturally, a Butcher’s Club Deli steak is no ordinary slab of meat. The Deli prides itself on its Australian dry aged steak, which is prepared in the custom-built dry-aging room and only available to private diners by the primal (yep, the whole piece!). Ordinarily, the meat is dry-aged for 30 to 45 days to give it that unique mature flavour, however this particular cut had been dry-aged for 90! Having never tried dry-aged steak before, I was pretty excited and it certainly didn’t disappoint. The meat was delicious, juicy and tender on its own and came with the array of homemade condiments that included a fresh chimichurri (my top choice), apple tarragon ketchup, veal jus and classic béarnaise.
Stuffed to the sides, I was still determined to find some space when I heard the dessert would feature apple crumble pie with chunks of cheese! An unusual combination perhaps, but it totally worked in a sort of chunky mascarpone way, adding a creamy texture to the sweet apple. The chocolate brownie cake also provided a pleasant touch however it was a little underwhelming as chocolate puds go. But hey, butcher’s are not known for their desserts!
As a private Deli diner or lunchtime goer, The Butcher’s Club Deli is a great spot to enjoy a traditional no-nonsense dish or share some good hearty grub with friends. It fills bellies, warms the cockles and satisfies the most meat-mad diner! Daytime main dishes start from $110 while salads, soups and sweets start from $60. Prices for private dinner parties range depending on the size of the primal and comes with a selection of fresh seafood with cheesecake and key lime pie to finish. Plus, depending on your eating habits, there should be a good amount of steak leftover to take home too. Just think of the lunchboxes that could make!
The Butcher’s Club Deli, 16/F, Shui Ki Industrial Building, 18 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Aberdeen, Hong Kong, 2884 0768. Entrance from rear after 7.30pm.