Expensive meat for bbq?

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Mosca
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2014/07/03 15:13:15 (permalink)

Expensive meat for bbq?

I've been tossing this around, and need to hear from some other bbqers, what they think.
 
From time to time, I get emails soliciting me to purchase "competition" quality meats. Stuff like Wagyu brisket, Kobe beef short ribs, Berkshire/Kurobuta or Compart Duroc pork ribs and butts.
 
Now, on the one hand, I get it. It is part of the luxury goods value equation, where price and availability affects perception of quality. But on the other hand, there is also a real difference in quality between these products and those that I might find in my local grocery (even counting Wegman's). It is up to me to decide if the cost is worth it, and to ignore as much as humanly possible the artificial connection to price.
 
If I were to drop the dime on this stuff, I would only do the pork butts and ribs, because I've pretty much mastered them. And I'm good with grilling, like steaks, burgers, chicken; I can hit the temps pretty much spot on every time. But I don't have the briskets and dino bones figured out yet.
 
So, the question is, how much difference in FLAVOR am I going to taste, given that I'm going to be rubbing, smoking, and slow cooking this stuff?
#1

16 Replies Related Threads

    ScreamingChicken
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/03 15:27:20 (permalink)
    I haven't worked with high-end beef but I've definitely noticed a difference between heritage pork and the usual offerings at the supermarket, usually in terms of flavor and fat content.
     
    Do you have good access to a decent farmers' market?  A lot of people think they're strictly for vegetables and the like, but sometimes there are vendors of home-raised meats as well and the prices aren't all that bad.  In fact, Mrs. Chicken mentioned something about hitting the DCFM Saturday morning and if she does I'll have her be on the lookout for some pork.
     
    There's a farmette just down the road from me and the owners raise Scottish Highland cattle.  I've often wondered if it'd be rude to show up one day with a knife, fork, and bag of charcoal...
    #2
    Foodbme
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/03 16:59:47 (permalink)
    I think it depends on how you cook it i.e. grilling vs. BBQ.
    If you're grilling steaks, chops, etc., yes, I think the quality of the product does make a difference.
    If you're BBQing and using rubs, injecting the meat, marinating it etc. then not so much.
    The add-on's negate the products uniqueness and cover up any flavor difference between store bought and Primo product. The only difference might be tenderness verses flavor.
    You can take an average piece of meat, doctor in up with rubs, injections, marinates, etc. and put a Little Lipstick on that Pig so to speak! 
    If I were going into a Competition for $$$$ then I might use Primo Meats, but for backyard, not so much unless it was for a very special occasion.  
    post edited by Foodbme - 2014/07/03 17:02:40
    #3
    brisketboy
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/03 17:31:23 (permalink)
    I'm with the previous poster. By the time that brisket is done and is sliced and the sides laid out I and my companions have consumed enough adult beverages that a steak from Peter Luger's would be wasted on these people. But if I'm cooking for the VFW/American Legion I will purchase the better cuts and take great care to put out a good spread. 
    #4
    Big_g
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/03 17:55:27 (permalink)
    I did one of Johnny Triggs classes last February and we cooked a Wagyu brisket and a certified Angus brisket..both were beautiful cuts of meat and both were cooked the same way....and they were both excellent to taste.....but I couldn't tell one from the other and I've had packer's from HEB that were nearly as good.  I also agree about the pork the heritage or home style pork is way better than most of what we can get at the super market.
    But on the grill....you can really tell the difference in a better cut of meat.
    #5
    pineyhill
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/03 18:13:35 (permalink)
    My sister and her husband and kids have been into the club calf circuit, they raise beef crosses. mostly Angus x Maine Anjou crosses.  That is some of the best beef we've ever had.
    #6
    Ed Face
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/03 18:19:54 (permalink)
    I did get Waygu steaks at Wegmans, at their flagship store in Pittsford N.Y. (suburb of Rochester), they maybe able to order it for you. By the way the steaks were wonderful, but not worth the price. I get swell steaks (not Waygu) less than a mile from that Wegmans for $7.99 a pound, paint them with butter while they are resting & you kind of get that Waygu flavor.
    #7
    Mosca
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/03 20:25:46 (permalink)
    Okay, that helps. We're having house guests next month, and I can get a few racks of ribs and a couple pork butts. When I make my pork, the primary flavor is always the meat. I use rubs, I do it on the BGE with light , and I serve with sauce on the side. But what you taste most is the meat.

    Wagyu fails the value equation for me. Not that it isn't great, but that my family and guests already love what I'm serving.
    #8
    ScreamingChicken
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/04 08:26:49 (permalink)
    Since you're willing to cook the good stuff they must actually be desired guests and not in-laws....
    #9
    pnwchef
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/04 11:57:50 (permalink)
    Smoke is all about low and slow. The better cuts of meat are better marbled. I would spend the money on better meat for smoking. We raise our own Black Angus cows, I cook the meat in less time using the Sous Vide method of slow cooking. A store bought piece of meat may cook Sous Vide for 48 hrs,cooked at 131 temp. I get tender meat in 24 hrs. This is a Top Round I did yesterday. It's a Black Angus top round off of a cow that dry aged hung for 30 days. 
     
    Sliced Roast beef with raw onion and mayo on rye bread. The meat was melt in your mouth tender.
     

     
    #10
    chewingthefat
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/06 17:12:28 (permalink)
    pnwchef
    Smoke is all about low and slow. The better cuts of meat are better marbled. I would spend the money on better meat for smoking. We raise our own Black Angus cows, I cook the meat in less time using the Sous Vide method of slow cooking. A store bought piece of meat may cook Sous Vide for 48 hrs,cooked at 131 temp. I get tender meat in 24 hrs. This is a Top Round I did yesterday. It's a Black Angus top round off of a cow that dry aged hung for 30 days. 
     
    Sliced Roast beef with raw onion and mayo on rye bread. The meat was melt in your mouth tender.
     

     


    Bill, that looks incredible!
    #11
    mayor al
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/06 18:16:28 (permalink)
    I got a combination of Ribs , Brisket and Prime Rib at Kreuz Market in Lockhart, TX
    at one of the RF meetings there.  The Brisket was "fall-apart" tender,
    while the Prime-Rib was firmer... not tough by any definition, but it held it's shape
    when the Brisket disinigrated when cut with a fork.
     
    Here it is..with the Prime Rib on the right, and the Brisket kinda underneath everything else.
     

    #12
    chewingthefat
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/08 17:42:59 (permalink)
    mayor al
    I got a combination of Ribs , Brisket and Prime Rib at Kreuz Market in Lockhart, TX
    at one of the RF meetings there.  The Brisket was "fall-apart" tender,
    while the Prime-Rib was firmer... not tough by any definition, but it held it's shape
    when the Brisket disinigrated when cut with a fork.
     
    Here it is..with the Prime Rib on the right, and the Brisket kinda underneath everything else.
     





    Brisket right out of the Smoker, if properly temped, will always fall apart, I "cure " mine, wrap it in foil, let it sit in the cooler 24 hrs. Then I defat it, slice and warm it in a beef broth we make. Keeps it from becoming Brisket hash!
     
    #13
    CajunKing
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/18 12:08:12 (permalink)
    Mosca - Since you are cooking for friends and not for a BBQ championship, I would call around to your local butcher shop or quality meat cutter.  As has been said by previous posters after low and slow and smoking most everyone could not tell the difference.  Grilling YES buy the good stuff, BBQing not so much.  I also agree with SC and others about the quality of Heritage meats.
     
    You could always ask Bill to send you part of his cow and piggies
    #14
    EdSails
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/22 01:59:26 (permalink)
    I got a regular old brisket from Stater Bros. a few weeks ago. No Wagyu, not even Choice. $3.99/lb. in the bag. It smoked wonderfully. 
     

     

    #15
    Big_g
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/07/22 07:10:38 (permalink)
    Ed, that is some fine looking brisket....ya done good...what time is supper?
    #16
    the grillman
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    Re: Expensive meat for bbq? 2014/08/14 15:26:07 (permalink)
    My brother and I have a bbq team; we participate mostly in the backyard competitions, we have done a few KC BBQ Society events, too.  
     
    Point is, for bbq'ing; it's all about the technique; the quality of the meat is important, but not the overriding factor.  I wouldn't waste money on a prime piece of meat to cook it for hours on end.  With prime meat, it's all about the fat and marbling; it would be cooked out during the bbq process.
    #17
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