Toronto family-run butcher makes mesmerizing charcuterie boards

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Third-generation butcher Frank DiGenova and wife, Mirella DiGenova, opened up their first butcher shop Butcher By Nature back in 2002, in an attempt to carry on family traditions.

The DiGenova story begins much earlier than that, though. Back in 1954, Frank's father, Nevio, immigrated from Abruzzo, Italy to Canada, where he taught his son all about the importance of farming and the art of butchery. And as it turns out, that humble moment was the start of the family's legacy––that is, their legacy of all things food, farming and butchery.

Over the years, the husband-and-wife duo has shown their determination and perseverance, managing a local butcher shop with the help of their three daughters, Natasha, Cassandra and Stefania DiGenova.

Getting into a routine, their daily lives became quite stagnant until one night––while enjoying a charcuterie platter, they were struck with an idea that was too good to pass up.

"It was always in the back of our heads, but we never gave it the careful consideration it deserved until this year," Stefania explains. "Grazing boards have always been a staple item in our home and at our family gatherings, but it was never anything more than just a fun hobby of ours."

"After some time, we noticed that our close friends began asking us to gift them with a charcuterie board for their special occasion," she continued. "This eventually led us to create Charcuterie by Nature, ultimately because more than anything, we wanted to share our love and passion with more than just friends and family to enjoy."

Being in the food business for 20 years was surely an asset. Having a family-owned butcher shop, the DiGenova's were able to source only the best and most premium ingredients for the project.

At Charcuterie by Nature, you can expect to see hormone-free meats, locally imported cheeses and homemade additions such as freshly-baked bread and roasted rosemary pecans, as all inclusions are locally sourced and produced.

"No two boxes are ever the same. Everything is handcrafted and unique, tailored to the customer's desires. We can customize a box to any request, accommodating anything from a nut allergy to a gluten-free diet, " said Cassandra.