Goat meat tickles the taste buds of Kiwis

POPULAR: Boer goat meat is consistently good and "nothing like old billy goat".
POPULAR: Boer goat meat is consistently good and "nothing like old billy goat".

Goat meat is becoming increasingly popular among Kiwi chefs and food aficionados.

Ash Boeyen, manager of Central Otago goat meat supplier Shingle Creek Chevon, said demand was increasing, particularly for high-end cuts, and the company could not keep up.

"Some restaurants take everything we can produce for some cuts," he said.

Lyttelton's Ground Culinary Centre owner Jenny Garing, who has been selling goat meat at the Lyttelton farmers market, said people were now coming looking for the meat.

"Sales have risen exponentially and people are disappointed when I have sold out."

Her goat pies, an easy way to first try goat meat, were "hugely popular". Having once tried the meat, many people were keen to experiment with different cuts themselves.

Wellington chef MacLean Fraser is launching a six-course meal at the Artisan Restaurant next month that includes goat products in each course.

People were becoming more food savvy and adventurous, he said. "They want high-quality products and something that is a little different, that is interesting and refined."

Fraser plans to keep goat on the menu. "I know it is good and I want other people to experience that as well. It is a consistent product and nothing like an old billy goat."

The co-owner and chef at Christchurch's Shop Eight, Alex Davies, likes experimenting with goat meat because it fits perfectly with the philosophy of his restaurant to provide locally and ethically raised meat.

Guilio Sturla, owner of Lyttelton's Roots restaurant, which was named runner-up for best new restaurant in the 2014 Cuisine Good Food awards, said the demand for goat stemmed partly from the fact it was "a beautiful story" - "healthy goats, produced locally by people who care and are proud of what they produce."

His goat meat is farmed by Lyttelton local Jozefa Wylaars, who said the future for goat meat was looking good.

The Press