A Guide to the Best Boston Area Butcher Shops

By Eric Twardzik

We usually write about the restaurants that cook your meat, but these butcher shops will make you want to indulge your carnivorous instincts at home. The greater Boston area hosts a treasure trove of meat purveyors, many of which are family-run and have been in business for generations. Whether you’re in the market for a sustainably sourced cut to slow-cook or just want to snag some house-made Italian sausage, the butchers below will meet (meat?) your needs.

Savenor's Market one of the Best Boston Area Butcher Shops
Credit: Brian Samuels Photography

A local institution on par with Fenway Park and Faneuil Hall, Savenor’s Market has been family run for 75 years and famously served as Julia Child’s butcher. (Today, they service local restaurants including Oleana.) Savenor’s operates two locations: a Cambridge outpost where whole-animal butchery takes place, and a Beacon Hill butcher shop that doubles as a market selling produce, pantry staples, and a wide selection of cheeses. Both locations are also known for their game birds and exotic meats, including wild boar, elk, alligator sirloin, and even rattlesnake. Delivery and shipping are also available.

Alpine Butcher

Meat from Alpine Butcher one of the Best Boston Area Butcher Shops
Credit: Thomas Doyle

Lowell’s Alpine Butcher is a fourth-generation family-owned business that takes pride in both a long history (they’ve been slicing since 1913) and an incredible selection. The latter is broad enough to include exotic game meats like buffalo and alligator, but don’t overlook the more predictable meats. All of the beef is USDA Prime and the pork is humanely raised and hormone-free. Alpine Butcher also offers a custom burger mix that begins with a base of USDA Prime beef and can include garlic, onions, cheese, bacon, and whatever other mix-ins customers desire. Somewhat surprisingly for such a legacy business, Alpine Butcher operates a robust Instagram feed; follow them for the beauty shots of beef tallow-dipped prime filets or Australian Wagyu you never knew you needed. Home delivery is also offered.

M.F. Dulock

man working at MF Dulock one of the Best Boston Area Butcher Shops
Credit: Scott Murry

Somerville butcher M.F. Dulock takes local sourcing seriously: Every animal it butchers is raised within a 250-mile radius. The in-house selection of beef and lamb cuts is generous when the shop is open (Thursday through Saturday only). The butcher also operates a “Meat Club,” which provides shares of five pounds per month collected in-shop. The share includes three to five different selections, typically broken down into one roasting or braising cut, steaks or chops, ground meat or sausage, and a wildcard option such as pork jowl. In addition to giving customers a deal on meat, the share program helps ensure that every part of the animal is used.

McKinnon's Meat Market

McKinnons Meat display
Photo Provided

Half-century-old McKinnon’s Meat Market, which styles itself “the Tenderloin of Davis Square,” is a place to find values on meat in Somerville. It’s where you can snag anything from two-packs of USDA Prime filet mignon to Chinese pork spareribs, often at prices that are too good to pass up. There is also a selection of fresh produce and affordable groceries. McKinnon’s offers pick-up as well as delivery through Mercato.

Quality Meat Market

Quality Meat Market sing outside their store

Tucked away behind an unassuming storefront in Roslindale, Quality Meat Market is the very definition of a hidden gem. It’s earned a loyal local following thanks to exceptional halal meats, a knowledgeable owner, and friendly customer service. Expect excellent poultry, a generous selection of cut-to-order meats, and shelves of groceries like imported spices, olive oils, and more staples that allow for one-stop shopping.

Walden Local Meat Co.

Walden Local Meat Co one of the Best Boston Area Butcher Shops
Credit: Joe St. Pierre

Walden Local Meat Co. partners with farmers in New England and New York to provide 100-percent grass-fed beef and pasture-raised chicken, pork, and lamb. You can experience it in two ways. The first is through a “Share,” a monthly subscription of selected cuts of meat plus specials like grass-fed butter and bone broth. The second is by visiting their South End butcher shop. Entire sides of beef, chicken, and more are broken down daily at the brick-and-mortar, which sells scores of cuts and also accepts orders for custom cuts online. Marinades, house sausage blends, and regional craft beers are also sold in the shop.

DePasquale's Sausage Company

Nestled away in the Italian-American neighborhood of Nonantum, DePasquale’s Sausage Company is a Newton institution. The 101-year-old spot is understandably famous for its namesake product, which comes in varieties including Sweet or Hot Italian, Garlic and Cheese, and the Massachusetts-specific Chinese Style Links. Breakfast sausages are on deck, as are other Italian specialties including meatballs, Italian canned goods, sauces, and dried pasta.

Butcher Boy Market

Butcher Boy Market one of the Best Boston Area Butcher Shops
Photo Provided

Butcher Boy Market in North Andover boasts a 60-foot-long meat counter and doesn’t waste an inch of it. The incredible selection includes high-end cuts like filet mignon and Delmonico steak, plus a wide range of marinated meats and beef tips in flavors like sweet bourbon, steak house, and burgundy. All of their marinated meats are vacuum-sealed, so you can easily toss them into the freezer for later use. If you’re looking for a wine pairing, Butcher Boy has you covered with more than 1,000 bottles to choose from.

Sulmona Meat Market

Stepping into Sulmona Meat Market is like being transported to the old, real North End that residents say vanished years ago. The zero-frills, no-nonsense, cash-only establishment offers a small selection of meats on a chalkboard—veal chops, lamb tips, ribeye steaks, and other classics—plus rabbit, veal osso buco, and house-cured pancetta. Their house-made Italian sausage, available sweet or hot, is deliciously seasoned with a grainy, fresh-from-the-grinder texture.

The Modern Butcher Shop

Photo Provided

This destination first opened in Newburyport in 2019, bringing locally sourced whole-animal butchery to the North Shore. The Modern Butcher Shop is now in downtown Danvers and boasts a dining counter serving up awesome beer and wine. The ever-changing sandwich of the day is still a draw, though the menu has grown to include Instagram-worthy charcuterie boards and more. The retail side has also grown. Check out the selection of house-made sausages in innovative flavors—think: Korean Spicy Pork, Nashville Hot Chicken, and even Birria Beef—and ready-to-eat items from the kitchen, like house-made fettuccine Bolognese and chicken soup.

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