We talked with Peter Molinari, Eataly’s head butcher, who’s been with Eataly since the Flatiron store opened in 2010, as he hand-cut tomahawk and flat iron steaks. To him, nose-to-tail dining “means supporting the local farms,” he said. “These guys have to raise these animals to a certain size, which is really expensive. And they also have to be able to sell them as a whole animal, because they can’t do parts like the big companies do, so buying that whole animal really helps support that farm.
“The really cool thing is, we actually get to go out and source these little farms,” Molinari continues. “We go out and visit, we get to meet the farmers, which is a huge deal. These are happy animals when you go visit them, and when you have a happy animal it eats a lot better.”
Manzo receives one whole pig and one whole veal each week (sourced from Raven and Boar in upstate New York, and Chickering Farm in New Hampshire, respectively), and the nightly special in the restaurant’s “nose to tail” program will depend on which cuts are available on that particular day, as the butchers and chef go through the animal over the course of the week. Nightly dishes might include testa, made from the pig’s head, or prosciutto cotto.
On weekdays, you can watch the butchers breaking down animals and trimming cuts of meat in Manzo’s new glass-enclosed butcher room, the most prominent addition to the revamped restaurant. The same cuts of meat are available at Eataly’s butcher counter as well, in case you’re inclined to try your hand at cooking the cuts at home.