Course Description

This course is designed for chefs, keen cooks, hunters and small holders or anyone with an interest in butchery. You will learn skills to get the most from the meat you raise, hunt or buy. This is an ideal opportunity to brush up on your butchering skills as part of your continuous professional development and learn new techniques to upskill and bring back to your kitchen. For those who send animals to the butcher, you will learn how to put together a cut list to best describe how you would like the carcass broken down into various cuts. Hunters will learn new techniques and cuts to get the most from their hard earned quarry. Numbers are kept low to aid hands-on learning, book early to avoid disappointment.

Places on this course cost just €175 which includes all course materials, lunch and some meaty treats to take away.

The Butchers

Our hands on Introduction to Butchery one-day course is led by two expert butchers John Griffin and Declan Gilmore (The Hunting and Homestead Butchers).

John Griffin has a wealth of experience as a boner of beef, venison, lamb and pork and his natural eye for detail led him to quality control role with industrial meat factories. He enjoyed his time spent also working at the retail butchers counter sharing knowledge with others. He is a professional hunter and culls deer annually. As a dedicated conservationist he strives to be self-sustainable at his smallholding in Co. Carlow. He keeps chickens, pigs, sheep and cattle alongside his vegetable garden. Family and friends are always guaranteed a full belly after a visit! The production of quality meat and passing on these skills and knowledge, alongside the appreciation of the meat on our plate, to every generation, is his passion.

Declan Gilmore is a qualified butcher for over 30 years. He has worked for most major retailers and small family butchers here and in Australia. He is passionate about local seasonal food and grows fruit and vegetables including crops for Irish seed savers and rears livestock in Co. Wexford. He is a qualified nutrition and health coach and shares his food and lifestyle passion with elite and amateur athletes. He loves teaching and learning about real sustainable food and his mantra is ‘Knowledge is only knowledge if it’s shared!”

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Book your place now

Date: Saturday 25th January 2020

Time: 9:30am to 5pm

Course Only €175.00 EUR

Includes: All equipment, notes, recipes, lunch & some meaty treats to take home.

Gift Vouchers Available

If you would like to purchase a workshop as a gift, please just enter the person’s name at checkout and we will email you the gift voucher with their name.




Morning Session

The day starts with an introduction to the tools of the trade and you will learn about maintaining butchering equipment, what to use and how to use it safely. We will start off butchering Organic chicken raised, slaughtered and processed on Regans farm. You will break a chicken into its prime cuts while under the supervision of the instructors. This will allow you to practice knife skills and learn a very useful skill for any kitchen.

Following a coffee/tea break, we’ll move on to butcher an Organic pig, born and raised on Regans Farm. We will discuss how the quality and flavour of the meat is impacted by how it is raised, fed, slaughtered and the length of time it is hung for. We will invite you to practice and hone your knife skills as we break the pig down together. We will talk through all the cuts, how to identify them and the best uses for them in the kitchen. We will discuss curing bacon and hams and provide what we consider the best recipes.


It’s going to meaty. You will have butchered your own lunch in the morning.

Afternoon Session

Oh deer! Back to the butcher’s block again.  This session teaches a unique method of skinning a deer and how to butcher the animal into its primal cuts.

We love to butcher venison as it is a fantastic meat that is rich in flavour. It is often considered gamey, exclusive, expensive or difficult to source. On our course, you’ll learn how to source the best venison and butcher a deer to create a range of delicious products and dishes. You will make your own venison burgers to take home with you.

We’ll finish the day making pork sausages, you will learn two different methods from John and Declan, you choose the method you want and make your own sausages. All that’s left to do then is to learn how to link and bag them for the trip home with you!

Topics Covered on the Course

This course includes refreshments and lunch and all equipment and notes/recipes are provided.

During your stay your host, Mary, will also introduce you to life on the farm and tell you all about organic farming.