Charlie Grainger is a butcher, but for the past year, he’s also been referred to as a ‘Meat Sommelier’. Learn what he does and how he will raise the steaks on your next meal at Oak Room.
What drew you to this career?
Butchery for me all started by the off chance. During my time at school in the UK, every child will spend two weeks, at the age of 13, in a local business. Just by chance the only business near where my darling mother worked was a butcher’s shop. And, after just two weeks, I was hooked.
How did Chef Tom Aikens find you and bring you to Abu Dhabi?
One day after work I happened to check my Instagram and, shockingly, I saw that Tom Aikens had followed me—I had been following him for 4 years—and finally he followed me back. We started texting and, after couple of Skype interviews, he put me forward for the role.
What is a ‘Meat Sommelier’?
I am a butcher; I have always wanted to be a butcher and shall always be a butcher but the opportunity of coming to work at The Abu Dhabi EDITION allowed me to grow in the way that I share my knowledge with our guests. Although the butchery aspect is still very much there, being able to cultivate guests is what differentiates a butcher from a meat sommelier.
What do you do at Oak Room?
My job at Oak Room starts in the morning. I come to work at 11am and after briefing I head to the butchery to prepare all the meats for the restaurant, fresh steaks every day. After this,
I change from my chef whites into my hand made buffalo leather apron. From this point, my job is to visit every diner’s table answering any questions they may have to provide them
with the best possible dining experience. I describe myself as a walking, talking encyclopedia of meat.
Explore the finest steaks from around the world and benefit from Charlie’s encyclopedic knowledge at Oak Room, Abu Dhabi EDITION, 02 208 0000, Oakroomabudhabi.com