At The Butcher Shoppe, handcrafting sausage and sculpting fresh cuts of meat is a family legacy. Owner Kevin Green and his son Jordan will tell you that serving as a local expert on meat is not just a job; it's a way of life. When the father-son team welcomed Troy Moon of the Pensacola News Journal into their store, Jordan showed off his extensive beef knowledge, knife skills, and the tattoo on his arm, which depicts a snarling steak holding a butcher's knife in each hand. When asked how long he planned to work for his dad, the ambitious and dedicated youth replied, "Hopefully until he either gives up this one to me, or we open another one." Given their talent and close connection with their customers, that may not be a bad idea.
In addition to prime, certified Angus and choice beef, the duo showcases specialty items such as bison and alligator, providing a “how-to” cooking guide with each cut in order to ensure the best flavor. They also turn their patrons' wild game into sausage—adding hot Cajun spices, maple, or sage for an extra kick—and handpick marinades and barbecue sauces that are ideal for slathering on grilled meats or making slip ‘n’ slide journeys more flavorful.
Originally built in 1955 as a full-service grocery, City Grocery has evolved into a gourmet deli and wine shop that indulges appetites with a menu of fresh deli fare, homemade soups, and signature sandwiches piled high with Boar's Head meats and cheeses. Like a mountain lion in a hardware store, the 12th Ave melt commands attention, arriving at tables topped with thinly sliced round of beef, havarti cheese, and horseradish sauce ($5.25 for a half; $7.99 for a whole), and the Boss Hog corrals troublemaking taste buds into a cell of french bread with an enticing entrapment of pulled pork and cheddar cheese ($5.25 for a half; $8.99 for a whole). City Grocery also crafts homemade soups such as Crawfish Julie ($5.99 for a cup; $8.88 for a bowl) and salads such as the chicken salad, which nestles homemade chicken salad on a bed of greens with pillows of tomatoes and a choice of dressing ($6.99). City Grocery facilitates on-site feasting with a roomy dining area equipped with colorfully clothed tables, but diners on the go can opt for carryout to keep themselves from getting hungry in the car or while arguing with a fire hydrant.
Cajun Specialty Meats crafts an array of piquant delights from third-generation family recipes. Seasoned pork stuffed into andouille sausages ($5.50 each) lends authentic Cajun flavor to gumbo, jambalaya, and rice. A selection of meats stuffed with other meats picks up where nature's creativity left off with complex protein ecosystems. Feast on a pork chop ($20) or a 10-pound turducken ($55), each filled with Cajun sausage. Meatless options include a selection of heat-and-eat entrees such as a sweet-potato-and-praline casserole ($8.99) that serves 8–10 people. Customers should call ahead to place Mardi Gras orders.
The spirit stockpilers of Paradise Liquor amass a dizzying collection of hard-to-find craft beers, fine and novelty wines, and liquors. The helpful, friendly staff will pluck the ideal bottle of wine from the extensive vino collection to best complement light summer pastas and hors d'oeuvre trays. Seagram's Gin ($19.99/1.75 liter) injects juniper tones into any gimlet, whereas Canadian Mist whiskey warms up to small glasses of ice. Christen newborn ocean liners with a bottle of Evan Williams Black bourbon ($19.99/1.75 liter) or enliven sleepy knitting circles with a bottle of Smirnoff vodka ($19.99/1.75 liter). If a favorite libation cannot be located on the ample shelves of Paradise Liquor, sauce suppliers are happy to place a special order or guide discerning palettes toward an alternative intoxicant.
Thomas Auld began his career as a fisherman in 1952, and since then, his family has been in the seafood business, specializing in shrimp. At Fisherman's Legacy, patrons may peruse lobster tails and fish fillets behind the glass counters of the marketplace or sit down for a meal of fried shrimp, crab cakes, and hush puppies in the dining area.
Following a passed-down family tradition, the cooks at J.W. Renfroe Pecan Company roast nuts and salted snacks, concoct tasty treats, and blend specialty coffee beans. Roasted and salted pecans ($9.95/lb.) serve long terms as snack soldiers in the munchies army, protecting the sweet, peaceful milk-chocolate pecan ($9.95/lb.) citizens. Festive Easter-bunny gift jars ($9.25 for a small), filled to the brim with Jordan almonds, satisfy sweet cravings and desires to eat candy from a hollow rabbit. Chocolate-pecan fudge ($25.50 for 24 oz.) traps helpless nuts in its rich chocolate, vowing not to let go until they say uncle. Deep and rich cups of Jamaica Me Nuts ($16.50/lb.) and Southern Pecan ($16.50/lb.) coffee pair perfectly with Sweet Divinity Logs ($2.75 for 4 oz.) and handmade New Orleans pecan pralines ($15.95/lb.).