As a teenager growing up in Melbourne’s Bonbeach, Glenn Dumbrell initially saw his butcher apprenticeship being great training for his weekend footy and boxing. Lucky for lovers of fine meats & BBQ he’s a better butcher than athlete, and now decades later he’s recognised as one of the primary forces behind “low and slow” BBQ in Australia. A quiet achiever, his success has been gradual and opportunistic driven by his passion for good quality food and helping people cook better. Glenn’s greatest enjoyment (besides seeing his beloved Magpies get up) is seeing a customer wax lyrical about their latest cooking success story.
In 2015, after a 16 year hiatus from the butcher business, Glenn with his partner Maria opened Char Char Char Butchers in Parkdale wanting to do things differently. His vision was to revive traditional artisan butchering, support Australian farmers providing the world’s finest meats whilst taking a step back in time delivering good old fashion customer service – elements almost lost with supermarkets dominating the market.
Glenn’s love of low and slow BBQ started some 20 years ago when he purchased a kamado style BBQ and began cooking up amazing meals for the family. He did not know it at the time, but he’d stumbled onto what we now know as “low and slow” BBQ.
Glenn’s First Appearance at Meatstock Melbourne 2019 running pork ribs demo.
Glenn & Maria as they featured in a Melbourne Age article featuring Melbourne’s top butchers
Pitmaster Tuffy Stone with Glenn at Char Char Char circa 2020
TLAA’s First Pitmaster Master Class: Sterling Smith preparing a brisket whilst Danial Barret made a guest appearance
When Chris Marks, American Pitmaster (8-time American Royal Grand Champion) and founder of Three Little Pigs rubs and sauces had Glenn prepare a perfect Boston Butt for one of Mark’s world renowned BBQ classes, the Char Char Char” low and slow” BBQ journey went into overdrive. Char Char Char’s reputation grew and Melbourne’s passionate barbequers and pitmasters from Australia and around the world frequented the store.
Glenn’s likable demeanour and passion for good quality food has seen him develop friendships with some of BBQ’s best-local pitmaster sensation Daniel Barret (who for a short period worked with Glenn to sharpen up his butchering skills) and American pitmasters like TuffyStone, Moe Cason, Wayne Mueller, Sterling Smith and Mike Johnston. On accepting an invitation in 2017 to present a ribs demo at Meatstock Melbourne, Glenn’s association with this event kicked off with trips to Meatstock Sydney, Auckland and onto judging the Butchers Wars at the Churrascada International Barbecue Festival in Brazil. As he proudly puts it, “Meatstock has been the spark in the flame that has catapulted BBQ in Australia.”
Danial Barret whilst working with Glenn suggested that Char Char Char start selling BBQ rubs, sauces and fuels. As their popularity grew so did the range and shelf space quickly ran short with so much more to offer customers. Hence, Turn Left @ Albuquerque was conceived, a true one-stop-BBQ-shop designed to inspire, educate and provide everything you need to take your BBQ to the next level.
Opening in late 2022, Turn Left @ Albuquerque continues the Char Char Char BBQ meats journey presenting Char Char Char’s extensive range of specialist BBQ meats combined with the most comprehensive range of rubs, sauces, glazes, BBQ’s, fuels, accessories and all things BBQ. It’s truly unique and a haven for those passionate about BBQ. Glenn’s vision is to create a hive of BBQ activities and events that will educate, inspire and evolve BBQ in Australia which excitingly is only in its infancy. Watch this BBQ space.
Owner/Manager, Artisan, Butcher Customer Service
I’ve been a butcher for over 40 years and love it. Food has always been part of my life and I realised food was becoming an obsession when explaining to my mum just how I like my coffee… she replied, “Glenn I really don’t know where you came from.”
My cooking journey started with my mum as a kid, to sharing a house with a chef, then travelling and discovering new cuisines, flavours and cooking techniques. My chef house mate once told me that “every meal is an opportunity”, and over time I realised when you step out of your comfort zone and try something new the results can be incredibly satisfying.
I’m the luckiest bloke around. I get to meet and connect with so many different people, from all walks of life, different backgrounds, cultures and varying levels of food passion. Everyone is on their own food journey and I love being part of it and assisting people along their way. The most pleasing part of what I do is seeing customer’s families grow and being part of the new generations’ food and cooking journey and helping them make each meal an opportunity.
Owner/Manager, Admin and Customer Service
I’m Maria and I do a lot of the admin back of house work as well as engaging with and serving customers. I’ve always wanted to run my own business, especially a coffee shop taking my inspiration from Daphne in Neighbours some time back… I want to do what she does.
Being of Greek origin cooking is about the excellent ingredients, the lengthy procedure involved in preparing the food, and the culture of sharing dishes with family and friends – perfectly aligned with selling the finest meats and great low n slow BBQ products. There goes the coffee shop! I’ve always cooked and Glenn has been a constant inspiration for my cooking endeavours with his love of quality foods. I really enjoy cooking something new and when it works there’s nothing more rewarding. The great thing about cooking is that the ideas are endless and you never stop learning.
I’ve been known for loving a good chat and enjoy my time on the shop floor serving customers and providing advice when required, hearing their stories and seeing just how much they enjoy cooking. The ultimate enjoyment I get from my job is when a customer returns and can’t wait to tell you how great their cook was and how much family and friends enjoyed it. Kali Orexi!
I’m Jamie, your sales manager here at TL@A. My job is to provide customers with the right information and advice to help take their BBQ to the next level, no matter what one’s skill level may be. We are all on our own BBQ Journey.
You’d probably call me a “general foodie” who absolutely loves all things BBQ. From the BBQ cooking process to enjoying the rewards of a good cook, the passionate and caring community BBQ creates and especially the way it brings people together. I also appreciate that BBQ is a continuous learning journey as we all strive to take your knowledge and skills to the next level.
One of the most enjoyable parts of my job is witnessing our passionate customers share their latest BBQ cook triumphs and their excitement as they discover new products and techniques. I love sharing my passion and enjoyment for BBQ and helping customers on their BBQ journey. So don’t be a stranger, come say G’day, have a chat and become part of the pack here at Turn Left at Albuquerque.
I’m Matt and I work behind the scenes helping the team build and grow the business. I’ve been involved in retail marketing for all my working life. My life changed when I met Glenn and witnessed his passion for great food and helping customers BBQ better and then realising his BBQ store vision – I was inspired to join the team at TL@A and Char Char Char Butchers. Whilst I’m still on my BBQ “L” plates I bring a vast amount of retail experience, marketing know-how and enthusiasm to the business.
What gets me jumping out of bed each morning is being part of a team that’s building something different, and really special – creating a hive of activity that will inspire, educate and grow the BBQ community. BBQ is the quintessential Australian pastime, its continued growth and development is limited only by the BBQ community’s ability to create and innovate. And when you see the passion driving such a diverse group’s love of BBQ the opportunities are endless.
Artisan Butcher and Customer service
I have been crafting my butchering skills for 25 years now and just love it. I take great pride in what I do as every cut of meat I prepare is an opportunity for each customer to have a terrific cooking and meal experience with family and friends.
I prepare cuts for both Char Char Char and Turn Left @ Albuquerque customers including the specialist roast, grill and low n slow BBQ cuts. Don’t be shy in asking for a specific cut, I like to deliver exactly what you want and how you like it. It is also a real pleasure to work with the quality meat that comes from the passionate farmers who take great care and pride in the product they supply us.
The other part of my job is serving customers at Char Char Char and the thing I love the most is hearing customers stories about their latest cook and the amazing results they achieve.
Artisan Butcher and Customer Service
I have been a passionate butcher for 44 years starting my career with Coles and over 25 years working my way up to Meat Manager and then spent some time in managerial roles at Head Office. I’ve been with Char Char Char for over 2 years now and have found the perfect combination of a great team, the finest quality meats and wonderful customers. It’s a privilege to prepare such great cuts of meat that customers enjoy and have some fun doing it.
Customers can really make my day, having a chat and a laugh, sharing my knowledge of meat cuts and providing cooking advice and especially seeing their enjoyment after a successful cook. It’s always enjoyable when a new customer comes in and sees the quality product we sell and spending some time explaining the cuts and farm behind the meat.