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Old 07-29-2007, 05:32 PM   #1
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Beef around the world

I'm intrigued to hear what quality of beef you guys get around the world.

Here's the situation in the UK where supermarkets are concerned:

The big supermarkets in the UK are convinced and obsessed that the British public want joints of meat that are bright red with absolutely no fat showing at all. In fact I think they've convinced the British public that's what they want. /sigh.

To get that red colour they just don't age the meat other wise it would go a "disgusting" brown colour. Let's also not forget that ageing beef loses some moisture which makes the joint weigh less and hence loses the supermarkets money because they charge by weight.

The bottom line is this makes for the most bland tasting, tough meat.

I think things are changing slowly - some supermarkets are now offering "Aged" beef at a real premium price which realy pisses me off considering this how it should be!

So - what's it like in your country?

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Old 07-29-2007, 06:17 PM   #2
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American beef is top notch. The only thing better is A5 or A4 grade Kobe from Japan, but I would say that the American Wagyu can sometimes be up there with the A4 (the A5 is on another level). Places like Niman Ranch in California, Snake River Farms in Idaho, and Painted Hills Farms in Oregon are just three of many suppliers of top notch Angus and/or Wagyu beef. The flavor is so exceptional that the only thing you need is salt. Pan sear or grill and finish it simply with fleur de sel or another type of finishing salt, and you're in pure bliss. IMO, the best beef in the world in order:

1. Japan
2. United States
3. Canada
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Old 07-29-2007, 06:41 PM   #3
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Good luck affording Japanese beef. They don't have much land to raise it on, which is why its so very excellent, I recall hearing they are fed beer. The price must be outrageous.
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Old 07-29-2007, 07:48 PM   #4
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We get some good locally raised beef here in farm country, mostly Black Angus. Sometimes two families go in on a steer, and have it butchered for the freezer.
My father-in-law used to raise a few cattle as a hobby, selling the calves for fattening up. (A lot of farmers will fatten a few cattle on the side, since they already have the corn.) He was fond of the French Charlais cattle. I don't know much about them, except that they are white.

As to the quality of the meat...it depends on the breed and diet of the animal. Around here, they give them a lot of corn.
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Old 07-30-2007, 05:44 AM   #5
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I'm certain that for the most part the animals here are well looked after (although I'm sure there are some unscrupulous farms), but it's more the point that the reselling supermarkets don't hang the meat.

They feel that the British public don't want to see dark brown meat with fatty marbling.

It's just so annoying
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Old 07-30-2007, 07:47 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Regallion
They feel that the British public don't want to see dark brown meat with fatty marbling.

It's just so annoying
That's so unfortunate - the marbling is a lot of what gives beef its great flavor. Because of digestive issues, I can't eat more than a couple of bites of a steak, although I can eat braised or ground beef. I really miss it sometimes. Since I go out to eat with friends almost every Wed., DH makes himself a nice steak with a baked potato on those nights. He usually saves me a couple of bites

Anyway, I grew up in the Midwest - my dad was an excellent griller of steak and there was always good beef available. Still is, I imagine.
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Old 09-21-2007, 10:50 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Regallion View Post
I'm intrigued to hear what quality of beef you guys get around the world.

Here's the situation in the UK where supermarkets are concerned:

The big supermarkets in the UK are convinced and obsessed that the British public want joints of meat that are bright red with absolutely no fat showing at all. In fact I think they've convinced the British public that's what they want. /sigh.

To get that red colour they just don't age the meat other wise it would go a "disgusting" brown colour. Let's also not forget that ageing beef loses some moisture which makes the joint weigh less and hence loses the supermarkets money because they charge by weight.

The bottom line is this makes for the most bland tasting, tough meat.

I think things are changing slowly - some supermarkets are now offering "Aged" beef at a real premium price which realy pisses me off considering this how it should be!

So - what's it like in your country?
I live in Edinburgh.

It's a rule of mine NEVER to buy beef from a supermarket. You're correct about the quality of the meat. Tasteless, bright red and not hung long enough. They put that horrible sheet under the meat to absorb the blood.

I personally buy my meat from a good local butcher, or sometimes I order some Highland Cattle Beef, which is absolutely fantastic. It's only just a little bit more expensive than the supermarket beef.

Mark.
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Old 09-21-2007, 12:35 PM   #8
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If you want to see outrageously priced American beef, check out Omaha Steaks. Some of their steaks will cost you upwards of $30.00 a pound when you add the shipping charges. Now I admit their meat is good, but it's not THAT good!

Their best deal, and the only one I ever order, is the All American Combo, which is regualrly priced at $99.00 but can be had, with a coupon, for only $59.00, plus shipping, and includes their "free gift" of an extra 6 burgers and a 5 piece stamped knife set and plastic cutting board, which makes a great housewarming gift for someone just starting out in their own place. You can order up to two packages, and have them shipped to two different addresses if you want to give one as a gift. If you have them both shipped to your address, you only get one free gift package, though.
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Old 09-21-2007, 03:17 PM   #9
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If you want to see outrageously priced American beef, check out Omaha Steaks. Some of their steaks will cost you upwards of $30.00 a pound when you add the shipping charges. Now I admit their meat is good, but it's not THAT good!

Their best deal, and the only one I ever order, is the All American Combo, which is regualrly priced at $99.00 but can be had, with a coupon, for only $59.00, plus shipping, and includes their "free gift" of an extra 6 burgers and a 5 piece stamped knife set and plastic cutting board, which makes a great housewarming gift for someone just starting out in their own place. You can order up to two packages, and have them shipped to two different addresses if you want to give one as a gift. If you have them both shipped to your address, you only get one free gift package, though.
Thanks Caine. I bookmarked this site and I signed up for their newsletter. That means they'll let me know when the $59.00 combo sale is on, right?
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