Most people who have visited Lismore in County Waterford will have been to the castle. It’s one of Ireland’s famous historical sights. But there is another gem in the village of Lismore that you shouldn’t miss. If you want to see how real butchery is still done how it always used to be done, Michael McGrath’s butcher’s shop is the place to see it. Firstly the shop still has the traditional metal hanging racks with meat hooks behind the counter, where meat used to be hung before the days of refrigeration. It also has the original separate booth where customers pay – no money is ever handed over the counter here. The butchers are there to practice their craft, and that’s what they do. You can watch them doing it, working at the butcher’s blocks in full view of customers. Michael is a fourth generation butcher in this shop. He has his own small abattoir out the back, where he processes beef and lamb from his own farm. Several big fridges are there to dry age meat on the bone, in the time honoured way. Here he is with two beautiful Angus sirloins on the bone, dry aged for 28 days to develop tenderness and flavour. McGrath’s has not been modernised in the sense of modernisation today. Thank heavens for that. You’ll find beef cuts like ‘housewive’s choice’, topside, rolled rib and brisket. Alongside plump local farm fresh chickens, palest pink new season lamb shoulder chops and joints, ox tongues, homecured bacon and other old fashioned favourites. And plenty of advice on how to cook them all. Long may McGrath’s continue to provide quality traceable Irish meat, handled properly and with care and craftsmanship, with good service and knowledge as part of the shopping experience.