Saddleberk to Fill Meat and Produce Needs at North Market Bridge Park
This will be the first retail shop and restaurant for the Urbana-based heritage pork producer.
The empty merchant spaces at North Market Bridge Park continue to fill up, and its newest vendor ticks off a lot of boxes considered essential to a public market. This morning, the Dublin market announced that Urbana-based Saddleberk, a heritage-breed pork producer, is expanding into the market, offering a one-stop shop for Ohio-raised meats, produce, spices and dairy products.
Saddleberk, which is owned by Greg Lehman, Dave Rigo and John Sommers, specializes in raising high-end Berkshire pigs. Its story starts with Watershed Distillery, which was founded in 2010 by Rigo and Lehman. In 2013, Lehman launched the new venture on his own, and after learning more about the business Rigo sold his share in Watershed, becoming Saddleberk’s CEO in 2018. In recent years, the pork purveyor has expanded its offerings into Kroger and Heinen's grocery stores, as well as other specialty stores in Ohio. The new North Market space will be Saddleberk’s first retail shop of its own.
On the protein side, Saddleberk will serve as the market’s butcher, offering its own pork products as well as beef, lamb, chicken and cold cuts from other purveyors. Rigo says two of its partners for sourcing proteins include Dee Jay's Custom Butchering out of Fredericktown, Ohio, as well as E.R. Boliantz Co. in Ashland, Ohio.
At 1,000 square feet, Saddleberk’s space will be the largest in the Dublin market and will also offer farm-fresh produce, eggs, dairy products, spices and other specialty grocery items.
In addition, Saddleberk will offer prepared foods that Rigo describes as “reimagined Americana,” with soups, sandwiches (including for breakfast), burgers, poutine, shakes and more. The Saddleberk space will have counter seating as well.
Joining the Saddleberk team as chef and general manager is Jack Dale Bennett, a Gahanna native and former Watershed Kitchen & Bar sous chef who is making his return after working for NoHo Hospitality Group in Detroit.
Rigo and Lehman have known North Market executive director Rick Harrison Wolfe for years through Watershed, so when the market’s previously announced butcher shop/grocer (The Dublin Farmer’s Daughter) pulled out because of the pandemic, Rigo says “it just seemed like the right place, the right time to do it.”
“To truly start fresh [with a] brick-and-mortar somewhere didn’t feel right," Rigo said in a phone interview. "[Bridge Park developer] Crawford Hoying has done such a fantastic job in creating a community there. You go and there’s something for everyone and quite a few apartments and condos … and now the connection to old Dublin with the walking bridge. It’s a beautiful concept that’s worked really well. We’re really pleased to be a part of it now.”
Saddleberk, which is expected to open in mid-summer, joins 13 merchants that are now open at the market (6750 Longshore St.). Two more food vendors, Hoyo’s Sambusas & Juices and The Pit BBQ Grille, are coming soon.