Florida Keys Business
Sunday, December 16, 2012
Meat shop hopes to be cut above rest

KEY LARGO -- A Key Largo couple has opened a meat store aimed at offering customers larger cuts for lower prices.

Santiago and Cary Perez opened Island Wholesale Meats last week in the median at Mile Marker 98.8.

The couple will be assisted by daughter Kayle, a Coral Shores High School student.

Santiago Perez, who worked as a butcher when younger, said the market will only offer high-quality meats that fall under the USDA categories of Prime and Choice.

"We offer higher quantity, but it is great quality," Santiago said. "We're great for grilling,"

Some of the beef cuts offered include outside skirt, tenderloin and ribeye. Customers can also choose from a variety of meats, including spare ribs, ox tail, goat and grilling sausages.

"We have everything down to the grilling salt," Cary said.

The store will also have a separate cooler for a selection of cheeses.

Latin foods, including yucca and tostones, will be prominently featured as the market hopes to target Miami residents coming down to the Keys for the weekend.

"Now they don't have to bring their meat with them," Cary said.

She said many weekend residents stop at Costco or other wholesalers to get their meat before driving to the Keys.

"Now they can wait until they get down here and take it out on the boat with them," she said.

The store also offers disposable plates, cups and utensils for grilling. Styrofoam coolers are also for sale.

By next year, the couple hopes to open a second store and eventually work their way down the Keys.

The store hosted a grand opening Saturday and offered free samples of meats and beer.

Regular store hours will be 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

jgore@keysnews.com

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