Cole Ward Available for Fall Butchering

Master Butcher Coleman Ward

In preparation for opening our own butcher shop our elder son Will and I spent 18 months apprenticing with master butcher Cole Ward of Vermont to learn the art, craft and science behind traditional meat cutting. Cole does workshops throughout New England and he is available to come to your farm or home to help with the butchering of pigs, sheep, goats and cattle.

To set a date for your own personal meat cutting workshop contact Cole at:

(860) 372-0681

Meat the Master

Cole is a master of his craft, an excellent teacher and full of wonderful stories. Working with him has been one of the high points of our journey to having our own USDA/State inspected butcher shop here on our farm.

Even if you’re too far away from him you can still learn from his over 40 years in the trade by getting his DVD series about butchering and his book that gives a deep peek behind the counter of butcher shops from the past decades of experience.

DVD Videos: The Gourmet Butcher’s DVD Video Series

Book: The Gourmet Butcher’s Guide to Meat

The book includes a CD-ROM with hundreds of additional photos from cutting meat – this is completely separate from the DVD video series.

Outdoors: 54°F/44°F Mostly Sunny
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Daily Spark: The cure for veganism is bacon.

About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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9 Responses to Cole Ward Available for Fall Butchering

  1. JimmyT says:

    hey walter…. did you guys take classes or do a true apprenticeship? that’s an awful lot of time away from the farm working for free. is he close by to your farm?

    • We did a true apprenticeship. In fact, on a few occasions we were the demonstrators, cutting pigs in the background, while Cole lectured about how to do it in some of his classes. And yes, it was a lot of time, spread out in half to whole day sessions over eighteen months. Well worth it – we learned a great deal and all that hands on time was invaluable.

      • JimmyT says:

        that’s awesome. our meat fabrication chef at CIA was amazing…. “just look for the natural seams” he would say as he carved up animals as if they were made out of butter. he was a fourth generation butcher and it showed. that was some time ago, and was only one “block” of the curriculum, so Cole’s video’s will be on my not so very short list of things to do as i get things rolling. i have a couple of pretty excellent books on butchering, but seeing it done “live” is a whole other level. an easy investment IMO. i’ve bought in plenty of whole hogs where i’ve worked, (cuts, cured, smoked, hung) but beef is another story. making the long cured meats/sausages is the most fun…watching them transform over the weeks/months is something else. worked with a guy that showed me how to use a piece of bone (actually i think he used an ivory “skewer” to insert into the prosciutto so he could smell it and tell how much longer it needed. now i can’t smell right anymore (hence the forced career change) but i’ll still hang ’em!

        Thanks for making so much information available; it’s definitely making my transition from chef to farmer less daunting. cheers.

      • JimmyT says:

        Hey Walter, a bit off the thread topic, but i’ve been looking into LGD’s, particularly Bulgarian Shepherds whose numbers are reportedly less than 1000 to date. Wondering with what and how often you vaccinate your pack. From some of the reading i’ve been doing “over-vaccinating” can be an issue depending on your veterinarian’s approach. Some suggest a Titer test to assess antibodies before administering any booster shots. What say you?

        • We follow the routine maximum vaccination schedules for protection as they are our first line of defense. The timing of some vaccines has changed over the years, such as the rabies vaccine which they used to say must be done every year but now is every few years.

  2. Jessie N. says:

    Cole Ward is available for butchering?!?!
    I don’t know how I feel about cannibalism … meat’s meat, I guess? ;)
    Does one serve Leg of Man in a similar way to Leg of Lamb?

  3. Dan Edison says:

    Hey I wish Cole could travel all the way to our farm but the bummer is we are way too far away. Ive got three pigs and a goat I would like help leanring to do and Coles the man. I already got his DVD so once the slaughter guy does his thing I’m going to try my hand at it.

  4. La Sonya Luther says:

    How can you find out about butcher apprenticeship programs in our area of Illinois? Did you literally go to a classroom and Cole Ward coming to a farm for a workshop is I am assuming a one time event not the 18 month apprenticeship correct? If you have suggestions on how to best be able to obtain this apprenticeship, please share. Thanks

    • We found out about Cole Ward through an article that had run about in in the Seven Days newspaper[1, 2]. I contacted Cole and told him that we were working on building our own on-farm butcher shop and asked if we could apprentice with him. I would suggest contacting your local organic farmers association as a good starting place as they may know of workshops. Look on the bulletin boards at local coop food stores as these sorts of things are often advertised there. I just tried a Google Search Pattern that brought up some possibilities. Click that link and for those who are in other states, just change the state to find more local options. Have fun!

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