Rusell Flint is a San Franscico native and has lived here in Seattle since 1990. He entered the Butchery industry in 1999 at Larry's Market where he help customers and cleaned the shop at night. A few years later, he started at Whole Foods Market where he learned how to cut meat. In his 5 years at Whole Foods, he learned how to make sausage, cut chickens, pork, lamb and beef and truly see the importance of naturally raised meat. While at Whole Foods, he meet Renee Erikson, owner the Boat Street Cafe, a small french bistro in Seattle. This turned into a career change and a life long friendship. In 2004, he left the butchery world to cook as the Sous Chef for Renee. While at the the Boat Street, he continued his interest in butchery and learned how to break down and utilize the whole animal.
In the early part of 2009, Renee brought Russ to what is now the Melrose Market (at this time it was still a working auto body shop). Russ saw the possiblities and decided that it would be the perfect space for a butcher shop. The idea that the rest of the space would be filled with fellow like-minded food vendors seemed too good to pass up.
Chris was the first employee, starting only a week after Rain Shadow opened. Chris is a Seattle native who spent a good part of his life in Hawaii. While in Hawaii, he spent his time surfing and cooking. I trained Chris on how to make Sausage right from the start as business picked up. Chris hasn't looked back from those first few days and makes pretty much all of the sausage at Rain Shadow. This may seem like a easy task, but it is one of the most demanding and constent jobs in the shop. When he is not making sausage, he jumps in and cuts meat, helps customers and cleans. Like all my employees, Chris is a loyal and reliable employee.
Nathan came to us in the fall of 2011. He is a native of Spokane and has worked most of his career in restaurants as a cook. Looking for a change of pace, Nathan came to Rain Shadow with many skills that made him a perfect fit for the shop. He has incredible attention to detail and completes every job. Nathan has primarily been learning the charcuterie program, meat cutting and sausage making. Outside of Rain Shadow, Nathan is an avid snowboarder and rock climber.
Matt is new to Seattle via Sandpoint, Idaho, via New Jersey. While cooking in Sandpoint, Matt developed his cooking skills and interest in meat cutting and charcuterie. Matt startedat Rain Shadow in September 2012 and has fit in perfectly. He has a great passon for food and this comes across in his customer service and ability to process meat. Also known as MacGyver around the shop for his ablity to rig anything and come up with solutions to problems that have been bugging the rest of us for some time. Give him a hotel pan lid and a teaspoon and watch him work. Bring him an Italian hoagie and he will be your friend for life.
Caitlin started to ask Russ for a job early in the summer of 2012 and after coming in every week for about 2 months, Russ finally sat down with her to talk about working at Rain Shadow. Caitlin's ultimate goal is to be totally sustainable and run a goat farm. She has worked in kitchens and on Goat Dairy Farms where she fell in love with the animals. It is a pretty commendable of her to raise the animal and then know how to properly process them when the time comes. Caitlin has picked up meat cutting skills but is mainly focusing on sausage production. "Pickles", as we like to call her, is a great addition to the shop and we all like having her around. Once you get her going, there is no stopping her. Just get her laughing and we will all be laughing soon enough.