Many expats in Brussels already know the Irish butcher Jack O’Shea’s, but since this is such a great shop, I thought it was worth a post. And if you’re new to town or just not a frequent visitor to the Schuman area, this place is definitely worth a visit.
Located on Rue Franklin, Jack O’Shea’s sells only organic meat, including beef from Ireland, pork from Belgium and chicken from France. The shop has both top quality cut meats and sausages, as well as prepared items like hamburgers and kebabs. They also offer a good selection of New World wines (seems to be a theme this week) and lots of other goodies, such as unique sauces, relishes and other Anglo-items (did someone say Tayto crisps?!).
Jack O’Shea, an Irishman that comes from a long line of butchers, opened the Brussels shop in 1998. He more recently moved to London where he now sells to restaurants and in Selfridges. The Brussels store is still going strong, with a multi-lingual staff of 6. This place is serious about its meat – you can even read about Jack’s ethos online and get a preview of different cuts of meat.
I often go to Jack O’Shea’s for special occasions and for example recently bought a beef tenderloin to serve 8 for dinner at home. It was amazingly tender and just delicious – I hardly had to do anything to it. Although I skipped preparing Thanksgiving dinner this year, I have ordered a turkey from here for the past few years, which can be hard to find in Belgian supermarkets before Christmas.
I used to work around the corner and miss popping in at lunch time for one of their sandwiches and homemade soup, which is a great deal at €6 for both. They also have meat pies and other treats like brownies (yum!), all of which they make on site in the upstairs kitchen. I know they also provide catering and BBQ services, and offer their products through the organic food home delivery company Reason2.be.
As an expat, what I love most about Jack O’Shea’s is how welcoming the place is – the staff is knowledgeable and very friendly and you can speak in your native language (whether that be English, French, Dutch, Polish, etc). The guys behind the counter are always happy to chat and recommend something good. The only downside is the price – expect to pay more than at a Belgian butcher or supermarket, but it is soooo worth it!
30 Rue Le Titien, 1000 Brussels (corner with Rue Franklin)
Tel: +32 2 732 5351
Open Monday to Friday, 8am-7pm, Saturday 8am-6pm
Images via Jack O’Shea’s.