At the closing of La Petite France in 2008, its head chef, Jonathan Nadolski, decided to open a butcher shop in the Courthouse Village Shopping Center on Goochland's River Road West. Nadolski says the smaller, more rural community was a great fit for a local butchery.
Based on what he calls a "romantic vision of a European-style butcher," Nadolski's Butcher Shop offers all things meat, game, poultry and fish. The selection includes but is not limited to local organic beef, chicken, rabbit and pork, as well as foie gras, sweetbreads and a selection of local seafood. You can also purchase pre-made meatloaf, kebabs, rabbit pie and other specialties.
Growing up, Nadolski always thought he'd be a stock analyst, so he pursued an undergraduate degree in finance, but an innate attraction to food competed with that plan. "As a very young man, I ate at a few high-end places, such as Michelangelo's in Arlington," he recalls. "That had a profound impact on me, and I was fascinated with how the whole restaurant experience came together." He worked his first restaurant job at age 15, washing dishes and scrambling eggs at Bowl America, just to learn the ropes. Instead of formal culinary teaching, Nadolski learned his skills working a variety of restaurant jobs, where he watched and learned from other chefs, particularly Chef Paul Ebling at La Petite France.
Today, Nadolski makes his own sausage, including smoked, fresh, Krakow and wiejska kielbasas, Italian, merguez (an aromatic North African lamb sausage), chorizo, andouille and chicken sausages.
That said, beef in its many forms was Nadolski's intended focus for the store, so in light of this, the shop will begin dry-aging its own cuts of local beef. Eventually, Nadolski wants to serve as a "quasi-brokerage for many local farmers" as a means of helping them move their animals more quickly. During July, customers will also have the opportunity to pre-order pastured waterfowl and turkeys for consumption in the fall months. "Essentially, you can buy your fowl as an egg and have it raised ethically and humanely, free-range and organic," Nadolski says. For more information, call 556-4888 or visit nadolskisbutchershop.com.