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Evan Lobel

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Everything posted by Evan Lobel

  1. Hi, There is no doubt that what an animal eats affects the flavor of its meat. But as I've said in response to other questions, so much really comes down to personal taste. Some people prefer grain-fed beef, others grass-fed and still others like grass-fed/grain-finished beef, as an example. I recall hearing a bear hunter once say that every year he likes to hunt bear in Alaska just after blueberry season ends. Why? Because the bears gorge themselves on blueberries through the season and, in turn, the berries impart a unique, somewhat fruity flavor to the meat, and he claimed, tenderize it at
  2. Hi, Some animal parts (e.g., cheeks, hocks, neck meat, etc.) that do not appeal to American palates are appreciated by other cultures ... which leads us to exports markets for these parts. Keep an eye on innovative chefs and leading-edge restaurants that push the envelope in their search for new ingredients and new preparations. Less-used products will always be hard to come by until consumer demand reaches the point where it makes sense for retailers to offer them on a consistent basis. I think there will be continued debate and urging of the USDA to amend and strengthen the definitions of n
  3. Hi, To me, the most interesting eating comes from the very best meat. And, as with all food, it comes down to personal preference. I'm a beef lover and I like a meaty texture and a very beefy flavor. That leads me to a strip steak ... the classic steakhouse cut is my favorite. Porterhouse is also a favorite because it combines the filet and strip in one steak ... two different steaks, two different textures and two different tastes. It's a wonder to me that, from an anatomical standpoint, meat that is separated only by a narrow bone could have such distinctive characteristics. I'm not much fo
  4. Hi, So much of cooking and grilling comes down to personal preference and using your sight, smell and touch to guide you to the results you want to achieve. Whether you put oil on the meat before or during grilling is, again, a matter of personal preference and what your experience tells you produces the best results for your taste. The discrepancy you note may have come from the fact that in our books, I, my dad, Leon; uncle, Stanley, and cousin, Mark, all write the recipes, and those recipes reflect our personal preferences. So, for example my cousin may prefer to oil the steak during grill
  5. Tad, Since its recent introduction, our customers' response to the kurobuta pork has exceeded our initial expectations. What we're hearing from our customers is that they are absolutely amazed that pork could be so flavorful, tender and juicy, compared to the commonly available commodity, or "white," pork. I believe pork at this level of quality will mostly likely remain a niche product, in part because of its cost. And, its cost is directly related to how the pork is produced. Pigs for commodity pork are bred to be lower in fat and are slaughtered at a much earlier age, compared to the type
  6. Hi Maggie and thanks for the question. Boy that crackling is wonderful isn't it? I think I'll be able to get it. Why don't you give me a call at the store and I'll look into it. 800-556-2357 EL
  7. Hi, Boy, isn't Hanger Steak great! Hanger has become extremely popular in the last few years, not all that easy to get really good quality though. Let me start off by saying, of course you can buy it on Lobels.com @18.98 per piece (16-18 oz.) But we're talking USDA Prime. When the center vein is taken out and the steak is grilled over hot coals, then sliced perpendicular to the grain.......WOW! watch out! Not much better. EL
  8. Hi. Thanks for the question. I do think that brines and marinades have their place, (I love brined turkey!). I'm more of a purest when it comes to steaks and chops but for pork and longer cooked meats, I have no trouble with it. Favorite rub...mix dark brown sugar, tablespoon chopped garlic, tablespoon dried marjoram, tablespoon kosher salt, tablespoon fresh ground pepper, 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper and 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice. EL
  9. In terms of veal production, I don't see any substantial changes on the horizon. That's because if you change the method of production, you will change the inherent qualities (e.g., taste profile, texture and color) that are considered most desirable: pale color, mild taste, supple texture. Veal has these characteristics because of the way it is raised: restricted movement and a milk-based diet. Free-range veal is very different in all respects -- it is darker in color, has a distinctive taste and a pleasantly chewy-beefy texture. This type of veal appeals to some consumers, but at this time
  10. Pork is incredibly lean these days due to breeding. What do you think of today's hog verses that of 75 years ago? What characteristics do you look at when choosing hogs for your business? Do you take issue with pork injected with a saline solution like much of the supermarket pork is today? You are right about the pork today being very lean. And over the years that is precisely what commercial breeders have been aiming for: lowest production cost, getting the pigs to market as soon as possible and controlled, low fat content. The most common complaints I hear are that pork today is dry and lac
  11. Hi Janet, This has been a very confusing situation for consumers and marketers alike, but the USDA has developed very specific definitions of such terms as natural, organic, certified, etc. In fact, the USDA's definition of organic is in excess of 500 pages long. Here is a link to the USDA Web site that defines many labeling terms and the USDA's definitions. http://www.fsis.usda.gov/oa/pubs/lablterm.htm Essentially, the term "natural" by USDA standards means "minimally processed," i.e. does not fundamentally alter the raw product. The use of subtherapeutic antibiotics and supplemental hormones
  12. Hi, thanks for the question. Best conditions for dry aging are a relative humidity of 60% the air should be well circulated by fans and temperature at 38 degrees. Dry aging is not something I would attempt to do at home for many reasons. Beef needs to be dry aged in larger sections such as loins, ribs, etc. One cannot dry age a steak or two in the fridge, it will just get wet mould and be inedible. EL
  13. Hi Steve, thanks for suggesting me, it’s truly my pleasure to be here. I remember when I started in the business 27 years ago my father (Leon) would often say things like; “boy, they sure don’t have beef like they did in the old days”. I think quite often the memory of moments in time, events and such seem to stick in ones head and over time that memory is greater then it actually was some time ago. Over the years much has changed in my business, in the early 80’s the Cryovac machine was invented which made it easier for markets to buy large quantities of meat and hold it for a long time. Tha
  14. Hi Peter. I would recommend approx. 1/8”-1/4” or 3.175-6.35 millimeters for home grinding. As for size and thickness, for me a lot depends how I’m cooking the burgers. If I’m doing it on open fire, I’ll shape the burgers on the thinner side so I can cook them real fast. If I’m cooking in a cast iron skillet I’ll shape them a bit thicker so I can cook them a little longer it medium heat. My burgers usually weigh in at about 10-12 ounces. EL
  15. Thanks, Jason I'm sure there are lots of opinions on this topic. There are simply so many combinations that people swear by. At Lobel's we mix ground chuck for juiciness, ground sirloin for texture and ground filet mignon for richness. With an ideal fat content of between 15 and 20 percent, you'll serve hamburgers that your family and guests will never forget. And if you want to try something outrageous, give ground hanger steak a whirl. I think mixing your own burger meat at home is a great idea. When doing this, you are in control of everything from fat content to cuts of meat to getting it
  16. Thanks for the great question, Steven. The first thing to keep in mind is that Certified Angus Beef (CAB) designates a brand not a breed. And just as any brand from soft drinks to refrigerators, markets its brand, so CAB is supported by promotional strategies and tactics to gain a competitive advantage in the marketplace through brand recognition and customer loyalty. CAB prime brings a tiered pricing strategy into the marketing mix. The physical characteristics established to distinguish CAB from other Angus and crossbreeds include no hump and no floppy ears. But Angus beef is common. In fa
  17. Hi! Hard to say. Don't know if you remember Lobel's Steak House back in the early '80's. The restaurant was on the SW corner of 43rd and 2nd Avenue. We stayed open for just under a year. The reveiws were wonderful with reguard to the meat, but not much else....wrong partner. You never know though...the right situation might come our way one day. EL
  18. Hi! Oh boy, this is a tough one because I have so many favorite cuts. I guess when it gets down to it I’m really a beef guy. I like to grill (on natural hardwood coals) either triple cut strip steaks or a whole strip (shell) of beef, these are the cuts that I usually find myself entertaining with. My preparation for both is simple and basic. I have found over the years that so much of coking/grilling/BBQ is technique. Once you’ve got the technique down the seasoning isn’t quite as important, but the sequence of the seasoning IS important. When I grill a triple steak, I use light olive oil cour
  19. Hi and thanks for the question. Lobel’s has enjoyed much publicity over the years and we continue to get more and more. This attention has not changed the way we do business. When I’m at a party and I’m asked what I do, my response is always the same, “I’m a butcher”. I never forget that and I never will. This is what I do and will continue to do as long as I’m able. It’s my passion and my love. What all this means is that it’s business as usual whether I’m cutting meat in the butcher shop or working to grow our online business. I hope this answers your question. EL
  20. Hi! Great question! First, dismantle your smoke detector. Then, take a cast iron skillet and place it in a high broiler about 6 inches away from the heat. Let the dry skillet get real hot…about 15-20 minutes. The steak has gotten down to room temp and has been pat dry with a paper towel. Rub a little olive oil (optional) on it, season with a good course salt and fresh ground peppercorns. When pan is hot, I mean real hot, sear the steak for a minute on each side, continue to broil for about 4 minutes on each side (2 inch steak) and let it sit for 5 minutes before digging in. Have fun! EL
  21. Hi! Thanks for the question. Believe me there certainly is a demand and good reason for us to ship to Canada. It’s all red tape! We should be there sometime after the holidays. To keep up with all the new developments feel free to join our Culinary Club, you can do that by logging on to our website and clicking on “Become a member of the club”. EL My Webpage
  22. Hi Trish, no doubt USDA Prime Beef is incredibly difficult to come by these days. There are always other options though. The first and most important as far as I’m concerned is to have some basic knowledge of what it is you’re looking for. When you're buying steaks for instance, never buy frozen. When you buy frozen you really have no idea how long it has been sitting in the freezer. When buying fresh, you are in the drivers seat, you can keep it in the fridge for a couple of days or freeze it when you choose. It’s important to look for some marbling in the eye of the steak even USDA Choice sh
  23. Hi Andy, thanks for the question. This was and continues to be a real tightrope walk for me, but I think I have had some success. My balance comes by keeping family traditions and values, taking it “one customer at a time” and treating all my customers with the respect they deserve. Since we are an “old world” type of shop, small (600 sq.ft) and family operated, when walking in, it often leaves the customer with a warm and cozy feeling (and some great beef!), now, this has certainly been a challenge to re-create with the online experience, but that is what I’m trying to do. I still answer 95%
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