Interview with Brad Ross, CEO of The Meat Club
1. Hey Brad! Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am from a place called Mount Maunganui in the North Island of New Zealand, a beach town with a fairly laidback attitude to life. After a few years at boarding school, I decided a return to this attitude was in order, so enrolled at the University of Otago, situated in the student town of Dunedin, some 1300 freezing kilometres south at the bottom of the South Island. Five great years ensued (with some legal studies thrown in there) and I was on the move again to Auckland to begin practising as a solicitor at Russell McVeagh. In my first year of university, my parents had acquired a beekeeping business and I spent my summer holidays assisting with relocating hives all over the North Island and harvesting honey, cultivating a healthy interest in natural, authentic products. After a few years in the legal profession, I felt the need to address this interest, and subsequently co-founded a Manuka honey drinks company, Manukee. The aim was to provide the benefits of Manuka honey in a liquid format, and grow the export of Manuka honey added value products from New Zealand. After a few years of supplying the product to international markets, my partner and I decided to move to Singapore.
2. When and why did you move to Singapore?
We moved to Singapore in October 2018 after five months of global travel. My partner had been offered a role at an accounting and consulting firm, and I decided to take the plunge to move here and test the market for opportunities.
3. What do you love about living here? What do you miss the most about home?
I love the number of opportunities that can be created out of nothing in Singapore. The pace of life and work is faster, but you can open the door for any number of ideas or products provided the execution is done well and the right people are involved. New ideas are well received by the Singapore market, and it is in some ways the perfect test market.
I really miss the nature of New Zealand, the ability to go outside and enjoy lots of greenery, crisp fresh air and swim in cold ocean water, not bathtub temperature!
4. What is your favourite product from The Meat Club?
I would have to go with the Cage Free Chicken Thighs, they can be cooked by absolutely anyone with a BBQ and stay so tender and juicy.
5. If you were to create your own pack, what would be in it?
6. Do you have a favourite recipe you can share?
Lamb cutlets, pomegranate and feta
• 1 pomegranate
• ½ red onion, finely chopped
• 1½ tbsp red wine vinegar
• handful walnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
• 1¼ tsp ground cumin
• large handful mint leaves, shredded, plus a few whole leaves for scattering
• 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• The Meat Club Frenched Lamb Rack, cut into cutlets
• 50g feta cheese
2. Add the onion, vinegar and walnuts to the bowl. Stir in ¼ tsp ground cumin, the shredded mint leaves and 3 tbsp olive oil. Season, then put to one side to allow the flavours to mingle.
3. Rub the cutlets on all sides with 1 tbsp olive oil. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 tsp cumin; season. Heat a frying pan over a medium-high heat and add the cutlets, 2 minutes on each side. Remove from the pan and leave somewhere warm to rest for 5-6 minutes.
4. Arrange the cutlets on plates, sprinkling with any resting juices, then roughly crumble the feta over the top. Splash with the pomegranate dressing and a tiny trickle more olive oil. Scatter with the whole mint leaves before serving.