Day in the Life: Andrew Duff, director of MacDuff 1890, resident butcher at St James Quarter's Bonnie & Wild

Andrew Duff tells us about his day at the helm of this fourth generation family business

Published 9th Sep 2021
Updated 6 th Oct 2023


I’m woken by my lovely two-year-old daughter, Tilly. She’ll sit on my head, demanding that the day has begun and everyone must get up. She then goes on to wake up our six-month-old baby who’s peacefully snoozing away next to us. Who needs an alarm?


I take our fox red Labrador out for a quick walk. For breakfast, I’ll have a bowl of porridge with some fruit in it. If it’s a really special morning then I might have a triple decker bap with Lorne sausage, egg, black pudding and the perfect brown sauce and ketchup combination.


I’m en route from Edinburgh to our wholesale factory in Wishaw. I’ll usually listen to a bit of Radio 5 Live in the car and think about the day ahead.


Down to the chilled area to inspect beef with my main cutter, Colin. I select products for customer orders and take photos to send to them on WhatsApp based on their specification for marbling/yield and fat. Then I catch up on emails and meet with my managers, Davie and Bryan. If it’s a Friday, I’ll sort out the food order for Roasted in Strathaven. Their chef, Theo, makes incredible brisket toasties.


Off to our butcher shop at Bonnie & Wild, calling our farm suppliers and a few potential new customers on the way. If it’s a nice day, I'll stop off at our producer group farms.

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Behind the counter after having grabbed a coffee from Broken Clock Cafe. I discuss with my team what special items can go on our weekly Butcher’s Cut menu with The Gannet, whether that be butter aged beef, Berkshire pork rib-eye, or even Galician 14-year-old ex dairy beef. I’ll also check in with my sister, Lindsay, in regards to what amazing produce we are promoting.


I catch up with all the other Bonnie & Wild concessions and discuss potential collaborations, then I’ll talk about new concepts with our team – Ryan, Hannah and Sam. We’ll also try out new varieties of sausages and burgers, as everything we sell has to be perfect. Then I’ll stand at the front of our beautiful Himalayan salt dry ager with a platter of free samples so we can get customer feedback.


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Grab a quick treat of one of Joelato’s new varieties. Ferdi’s flavour and salted pistachio are strong favourites. Bag a cote de boeuf (from a Heatheryhall Farm belted Galloway) and burgers on my way out the door.


I light up my Big Green Egg, or my ‘second wife’ as my lovely wife, Alice, calls it. I get it going with natural lump wood charcoal, get the meat probe in the cote de boeuf. link to the app and, boom, cooking made easy.


I sit down for dinner with medium rare beef, chips and caponata. I’ve got a bottle of red bought from Inverarity Morton at Bonnie & Wild - an Alfonso (their sommelier) special.

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Bath and bed time for my daughters. I’ll read them Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Once they’re asleep, I’ll watch MasterChef or Great British Menu.


Off to sleep (dreaming about the cote de boeuf).

Gaby Soutar is a lifestyle editor at The Scotsman. She has been reviewing restaurants for The Scotsman Magazine since 2007 and edits the weekly food pages.
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