Meat the team at Victor Churchill
Making sure you enjoy your time at Victor Churchill is why our dedicated team get out of bed before the sun is up, turn on the lights, fill the fridges with delicious treats and check on the dry aging meat! Our team of industry professionals at Victor Churchill will turn your visit into an experience ‘par excellence’ – much more than just an average trip to your local butcher!
With chefs who have worked alongside some of the world’s finest, to foodies who have travelled the world and our long-term, meat industry professionals – you will be hard pressed to find such an amazing depth of knowledge or a more passionate team of gourmands – all waiting to serve you!
Victor Puharich comes from a long line of butchers in Croatia, where he was born.
Vic opened his own butcher store on Oxford Street, Sydney in 1996. In 1999 Vic and his son Anthony grew Vic’s Premium Quality Meat from a retail shop to a meat wholesaler. Vic’s Meat moved to a purpose-built building in Mascot, with state-of-the-art cool rooms, cutting floors, packing rooms and a dedicated dry-age room.
Victor was inducted into the Food Hall of Fame in October 2007. He still loves to butcher meat to the highest of standards and share his knowledge and passion with his customers.
Anthony Puharich, along with his Father, grew Vic’s Premium Quality Meat from a retail shop on Oxford St, Sydney to an international meat wholesaler.
Anthony Puharich completed a finance and economics degree at Queensland’s Bond University, before realising that his entrepreneurial skills could be better put to use in the family business. He has grown the Vic’s Meat brand internationally, and was instrumental in the re-birth of Victor Churchill. Anthony has featured in many of the country’s top food magazines, ABC radio, ‘Fresh’ on Channel 9, and is recognised as one of the leading voices in the industry.
Romeo, a native Frenchman, has over 18 years experience in the business. Originally trained in Brittany, France, Romeo took his skills to Harrods in London where he produced their charcuterie. After a few years Romeo moved into some of the best restaurants and worked with some of the best in both London and Sydney (Marco Pierre White’s Mirrabell in London and in Sydney at Guillaume at Bennelong) and as Head Chef at GPO Restaurants and Bars.
Prior to Victor Churchill, Romeo ran his own successful charcuterie business which worked closely with Vic’s Premium Quality Meat.
Nathan Lo Russo
Nathan Lo Russo, A Paddington local, has joined the Victor Churchill team as the Retail Operations & Store Manager. Since owning his own wine and grocery stores in Sydney, Nathan has become an expert in fresh produce and wine. Also gaining his culinary and wine experience during his many overseas adventures, Nathan is working with the Victor Churchill team ready to offer advice on all things food – especially everything Italian!
Our head butcher Darren O’Rourke is actually chef-turned-butcher, giving him the edge when it comes to answering all your culinary questions. Darren worked at Bathers Pavilion with Serge Dansereau and at Bird Cow Fish with Alex Herbert, before swapping the pans for the cleavers. Working behind the butcher’s block allowed him a fresh challenge and more time at home with his beautiful son Hunter. We are very pleased to say that Darren has been with Victor Churchill since we opened.
Peter, a country boy, was born and bred in Walgett, NSW. He moved to Sydney when he was 16 to start his apprenticeship in Sydney’s west. Peter worked with the same butcher for 12 years where he learnt the importance of multi-tasking as he served customers, the art of breaking down carcasses and sausage making.
Peter was hired as the youngest supervisor with TA Fields which was quite an accomplishment for a 22 year old. Peter bought his own butcher shop in Randwick which he successfully ran for eight years and after selling the business, Peter moved into the Rosebay area where he enjoys life in the eastern suburbs. Peter is passionate about meat and likes assisting customers with their meat selection.
Welcoming our new Floor Manager to the team, Suzie has been working as a private chef aboard some of the worlds’ largest sailing yachts, Suzie has travelled to the ends of the earth in search of fine produce. Cooking for industrialists, movie stars, European royalty and many a discerning palate Suzie has an intimate understanding of the importance of exceptional ingredients – and good service. Suzie has trained at Le Cordon Bleu, the Royal Thai School of Culinary Arts and in the Cantonese kitchens of the Hotel Intercontinental, Hong Kong. Recently, her six years as the executive chef and manager of an exclusive villa in St Tropez developed her knowledge of Mediterranean cuisine and her love of regional and seasonal produce. She is delighted to be back in Sydney surrounded by the best produce in a role which allows her to share her joy of fine food!
Ben Sisto grew up in our wonderful Eastern Suburbs and is a lover of all things food. Ben ate his way around Western Europe as well as North America announcing Duck in the Czech Republic as his favourite dish. Ben has a wonderful background which includes Spanish and Peruvian ancestry. This has lead to his wonderful range of cooking skills and food knowledge that he is waiting to share with you at Victor Churchill.
Robert Dunn is the newest member of our kitchen team and comes to Victor Churchill via wonderful establishments such as Icebergs and Blancmange. Having worked in Sydney kitchens for over 8 years, Robert joins Victor Churchill to expand his Charcuterie and Traiteur experience and to offer our customers wonderful advice and recommendations for lunch or dinner.
Luke has joined the Victor Churchill team as a qualified chef with over 5 years experience from venues across Australia. A local lad who brings a smile, friendly service and advice on the finest cuts of meat for either your special event or to feed your family on a budget. Lukes creative mind will ensure visitors to our store receive a delicious solution to any of their gastronomic needs.
Meet our new chef on the team, born and raised in Cronulla, Mark Currie. Mark started cooking at the age of 17 working his way up through the ranks at various Sydney restaurants including Rockpool, Buon Ricardo and Quay. Mark made many friends at these amazing Sydney institutions and credits them with where he is today along with the amazing support from his family and friends. After attending a Beef Butchery class at Victor Churchill his parents bought Mark as a gift, he knew he wanted to get involved with the store and walked away with a smile on his face as he had found his next calling.
Kirk Dodd is back on the Victor Churchill team after a year away studying at Edinburgh University. While away Kirk had many great foodie experiences including tasting Scotland’s Cullen Skink and enjoying copious amounts of amazing Aberdeen Black Angus Beef. Now Kirk has returned to Sydney to finalise his studies and share his great depth of food knowledge with our customers.
Born and bred in U.K. Studied B.A in History of Art and Catering at Oxford Brooks University which furthered a career in restaurants throughout Europe particularly incorporating the love of skiing and food. Hence Verbier, Aspen, Val D’isere chosen places to work arriving in Australia in 1986 on a Holiday Visa Jane has now settled in Sydney, 21 years later and 4 Children on still indulging in her passion of food and the country and her love of Australia. Jane is enjoying the combination of working at Victor Churchill’s incorporating her knowledge of food and service acquired during years of work and travel.
Meet our new, young butcher Micky who was born and raised in Oxford England before joining the Victor Churchill team. Micky’s career began at a popular chain Butcher before he progressed on to an apprenticeship at a local, award-winning butchery where he learnt from some of the most skilled butchers in England. Micky’s passion for meat enabled him to win many awards for his skills in sausage making and meat preparation. He also has a secret passion for cooking and you’ll regularly see him assisting customers in any of their culinary needs. Micky is a friendly, helpful member of the team who is always on hand to help our customers select the perfect meat.
Amanda comes from the small NSW rural town of West Wyalong, where she was raised on the celebration of great food and country hospitality. Having grown up on a mixed farming and grazing property, Amanda has developed a deep appreciation and knowledge of agricultural and livestock practices. Amanda is currently completing her degree in planning with a passion for rural planning. Long summers spent on the south coast of NSW have inspired Amanda’s intrigue of fresh and local produce from farmers markets in her cooking. Being a regular at food festivals throughout the year indulges Amanda’s love and admiration of all things food.
An avid traveller, Simon has a passion for chasing down the weird and wonderful on offer in the world of food. His culinary curiosity has tested his palate, leading him to foods such as black bear in the forests of Romania, silkworm in Beijing, and snails in the streets of Morocco. When he’s back home in Sydney, Simon indulges his fascination for all meats cured, smoked and dried – by making his own biltong.
Aaron Diray born and raised in the Philippines. Has moved from an engineering background and now is working with the Kitchen team. Why we ask? Because Aaron’s passion for cooking and food has finally taken over him. Aaron is enjoying and loving it and he sees himself working for long term in VC hopefully being the stepping stone to reach his career goal become a VC chef in the future.