Hakim Bourahla

Butchery Manager
La Grande Épicerie de Paris

My Métier d’Excellence 

I’m the manager of the Butchery at La Grande Épicerie de Paris. We work from whole carcasses, cutting meat according to different seasons and serving the shop’s customers. I manage a team of 15 butchers. My team is divided into three sections – butchery, preparation and sales. I choose the members of each team based on their skills and to enable them to gain expertise in all three areas. I work in all three of these métiers myself at La Grande Épicerie de Paris.

My background

I began learning butchery when I was 13 since I come from a long line of butchers – my father, grandfather and great grandfather were all butchers! I actually started studying law, but I quickly understood that butchery was what I really loved, so I earned my vocational degree. I had already worked in butcher shops other than my father’s before joining La Grande Épicerie de Paris in 2016, when I was 20. I was appointed Butchery Manager in September 2019.

What I love most about my métier

I really love the contact with our customers. I first discovered that when I worked with my father, and I continue to really enjoy talking with loyal customers – I’m a bit like their ‘short session’ therapist! In fact I love everything about this métier, preparing the meat, making the products, working with my hands with a product that I’m partcularly fond of, as well as the smell of meat, something I literaly grew up with!

Passing on the métier to new generations

That’s something I feel is very important, and I’m always generous with advice to help my butchers develop their skills. I share my passion for the métier with them because that’s indispensable to succeed, given that this métier can be physically tiring and requires great attention and precision. I’m always in contact with other butchers in Paris to continue to learn, and I share the things I discover with my team. And this goes in both directions, because I learn an enormous amount from the other butchers at La Grande Épicerie!

Pride in practicing this métier

I’m extremely proud to be a butcher at La Grande Épicerie de Paris. It’s a great source of pride for my father too, and for all the butchers who helped me since I began, and I’m happy that I have not let them down. I’m also proud of this métier, which I promote whenever I can to show that it is not simply a job for people who didn’t pursue academic studies. We have real savoir-faire and I’m fortunate at La Grande Épicerie to be able to work with absolutely magnificent meats, from Wagyu from Kobe and Kagoshima to pieces that have been aged for over two months, letting me exercise my skill and creativity.