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Lobel's Online Store


melkor
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I am a cheap bastard, so I got one 12-oz USDA prime strip steak, for absolutely nothing! They didn't even ask for my credit card number. I told Laurie about this and she gave me the most disbelieving look you have ever seen.

Matthew Amster-Burton, aka "mamster"

Author, Hungry Monkey, coming in May

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I am a cheap bastard, so I got one 12-oz USDA prime strip steak, for absolutely nothing!  They didn't even ask for my credit card number. I told Laurie about this and she gave me the most disbelieving look you have ever seen.

in that case, i see no reason why you can't have one sent to your place of business for free again. and your summer house. and any other address that you have access to.

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arthur schwartz did a taste test this morning as well.

Can you summarize?

mom-in-law is in charge of listening to him. i didn't, unfortunately. however, one thing he said was that it's well worth it, regardless of the price. i'm very much looking forward to wednesday when i get my steaks.

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I should add, given that the Wagyu from Lobel's costs approximately twice as much as their USDA Prime, the USDA Prime is far more desirable from a value perspective, unless you very specifically want the Wagyu taste and money is no object.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Thanks for the info. I just registered and ordered 2 New York bone-in strips for delivery on Tuesday. It's a long time since I bought meat from Lobel's and look forward to comparing it with the steaks I buy from the Florence market.

Ruth Friedman

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2 - 8 oz. wagyu sirloins, to be delivered just in time for our first anniversary!  only cost me 8.93.  i feel naughty!

i cant take it anymore. i have to have that wagyu beef. i am going to order today. let me know how yours turns out

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Hi, I've been lurking around here for awhile now but had to post a BIG THANK YOU Melkor for this great deal!

I splurged a little a spent $24.98 for the 16oz. Wagyu Rib steak. I have been wanting to try this type of steak, but it's always been out of my budget.

Yipeee, I know what's on the menu Friday night. :smile::smile::smile:

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Ordered 4 beef tournados, which we will receive Weds. Since we're so far from NY, the shipping was $26, but oh well.

Anyone have suggestions on what to do with them?

I'm your only friend

I'm not your only friend

But I'm a little glowing friend

But really I'm not actually your friend

But I am

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I don't think FedEx charges by distance within the continental US. Priority overnight with a lot of ice packs is just expensive.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Tonight we ate the second half of the Lobel's shipment I discussed in the Wagyu v. USDA Prime post above. This time we had Lobel's two new products: the "Cowboy steak" (a two-pound bone-in rib, essentially a cote de boeuf) and the bacon-wrapped tenderloin (a 10-ounce bacon-wrapped filet mignon). These were both USDA Prime.

Four of us were eating, so I decided to slice the steak and, since I'm preparing the stock-and-sauce clinic for the eGCI already I had all the makings of a bordelaise sauce. Also, because this was sort of a dinner party, I cooked the steaks restaurant-style so as not to be dealing with them when the guests were here. About 90 minutes before the meal (before the guests arrived) I achieved a crust on each steak by using the broiler. I let the steaks sit in a 350 degree oven for about ten minutes after that (I wanted the filet cooked more than the rib, because I needed to be able to find some medium-cooked outside slices to give to one of the guests, so cooking each the same amount of time achieved that -- normally I'd give about 20% more time to the rib). Then I rested the steaks on a rack until half an hour before dinner. Here's the rib in repose.

lobels2.jpg

At that point, I put the steaks in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes to bring them back to temperature (this was the temperature at which the potatoes were baking, otherwise I'd have made it a little lower), cook them a little more, and improve the crust. Then I rested for 15 minutes, carved, drizzled with bordelaise and served additional sauce on the side.

lobels1.jpg

What can I say? They were fabulous. But -- and this isn't to take anything away from the specimens we ate tonight -- I still think the best thing going is the Lobel's New York strip.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Thanks for the info guys. I just ordered a 16oz Boneless Rib Steak. That's a real nice way for a Pittsburgh guy to get a taste of that NYC action. Now the only thing to decide is cook it over a hardwood fire or do the stand-by cast iron skillet method.

FG-just noticed your last post. Your final comment about the strip being the best thing going there has me with buyers remorse. Oh well...next time...

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Ordered 4 beef tournados, which we will receive Weds.  Since we're so far from NY, the shipping was $26, but oh well.

Anyone have suggestions on what to do with them?

I'd put a little dijon mustard on them then add a little kosher salt and black pepper. Sear them off with a little butter, pull them out, deglaze with a little brandy a quick squeeze of lemon. Toss them back in to coat them.

Or make a nice brandy cream sauce for them.

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Wowee, is that stuff expensive. This weekend I was in a local butcher shop, where they owner had wagyu for $25 a pound. He made a persuasive argument for it, but I just didn't have the heart to spend the money like that. The main reason was that my usual butcher has USDA prime dry-aged strips for $10.99 a pound (their dry-aged prime bone-in porterhouse recently went up to $14.99 a pound because of the beef shortage that the NYT wrote about recently).

Sigh.

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My usual butcher, Stew Leonard's in Yonkers, also has USDA prime dry-aged strips for $10.99 a pound. And they're excellent. But when you're looking at USDA Prime as a category you've got to realize that it's encompasses a huge range of quality, and also that it's only a visual inspection standard that doesn't tell anything about the breed, feed, slaughter methods, etc. Butchers like Stew Leonard's and most likely anyone else who sells prime dry-aged meat at $10-$15 per pound tend not to be selling from the top end of the prime spectrum. This meat is only slightly better than the upper level of USDA choice meat would be, and sometimes not even (for example, most Niman Ranch carcasses would be graded choice were Niman to participate in the grading program, but they're markedly superior to most low-prime because of all the factors that can't be ascertained though the visual inspection). If you go to Lobel's or Peter Luger for your steak, you are buying from the top 10% or less of USDA prime -- they could easily create another grade for it, the standards are that much higher. As much as I think the Stew Leonard's prime beef is delicious -- and it really is better than what most steakhouses serve -- there's just no comparison between it and the really elite stuff. Nor is there any way to sell it for $10.99 a pound. Lobel's charges around $35 per pound for its USDA prime boneless strips. Are they three times as good as what one gets at Stew Leonard's? Of course not -- and I'm not sure flavor can be quantified that way anyway. But when it comes to luxury items and improvements in quality at the margin, you're always going to fall into the rapidly steepening curve of diminishing returns. The quality improvement between $5 and $10 per pound steak is massive (controlling for other variables). From $10 to $20 it is less massive. From $20 to $35 per pound, you're paying not for a huge marginal improvement but, rather, to have the best -- you're paying for whatever improvement there is to be had.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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From $20 to $35 per pound, you're paying not for a huge marginal improvement but, rather, to have the best -- you're paying for whatever improvement there is to be had.

Interesting--law of diminishing returns, yeah. It exists nearly everywhere. I guess I'll shell out for the wagyu one of these days--on a special occasion, maybe. See if I notice a difference.

Edited by mrbigjas (log)
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:sad: i was on-line yeterday and saw the lobels coupon but got distracted.  i am back today to place my order and cant find the coupon. who took it????

the link still exists from morrel.

also, i think *any* first time customer gets the discount. if you started signing up, and odering, and then got distracted (like i did!), just continue with the ordering process. even though it doesn't immediately tell you that you have a 50 dollar credit, it should remember that you do. you'll see it when you get to the confirmation screen. believe me, i almost cried when i lost mine. :shock:

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My usual butcher, Stew Leonard's in Yonkers, also has USDA prime dry-aged strips for $10.99 a pound. And they're excellent. But when you're looking at USDA Prime as a category you've got to realize that it's encompasses a huge range of quality, and also that it's only a visual inspection standard that doesn't tell anything about the breed, feed, slaughter methods, etc. Butchers like Stew Leonard's and most likely anyone else who sells prime dry-aged meat at $10-$15 per pound tend not to be selling from the top end of the prime spectrum. This meat is only slightly better than the upper level of USDA choice meat would be, and sometimes not even (for example, most Niman Ranch carcasses would be graded choice were Niman to participate in the grading program, but they're markedly superior to most low-prime because of all the factors that can't be ascertained though the visual inspection). If you go to Lobel's or Peter Luger for your steak, you are buying from the top 10% or less of USDA prime -- they could easily create another grade for it, the standards are that much higher. As much as I think the Stew Leonard's prime beef is delicious -- and it really is better than what most steakhouses serve -- there's just no comparison between it and the really elite stuff. Nor is there any way to sell it for $10.99 a pound. Lobel's charges around $35 per pound for its USDA prime boneless strips. Are they three times as good as what one gets at Stew Leonard's? Of course not -- and I'm not sure flavor can be quantified that way anyway. But when it comes to luxury items and improvements in quality at the margin, you're always going to fall into the rapidly steepening curve of diminishing returns. The quality improvement between $5 and $10 per pound steak is massive (controlling for other variables). From $10 to $20 it is less massive. From $20 to $35 per pound, you're paying not for a huge marginal improvement but, rather, to have the best -- you're paying for whatever improvement there is to be had.

Steven wouldn't even Stew Leonard's in Yonkers(& others), carry a fairly wide range of quality in their USDA Prime beef at any one time in the shop? I'm aware of some butchers that save the best stuff for their restaurant customers & fussy regulars who want the best they have. Even what's on display at butcher shops, not all the steaks have the same amount of marbling for example.

--------------

Steve

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Given that beef is a natural product, if you have steaks from two different carcasses you by definition have a range of quality. And certainly if a butcher has multiple clients there will be stuff held in reserve for the best customers, at least some of the time (usually it will be whatever has more visible marbling, even though that's only a way of making a prediction and not a guarantee of quality). But most butchers don't do any restaurant business, and most are only selling their USDA Prime retail at one price -- I've never been in a butcher shop that said, here's the okay prime for $15 a pound and here's the much better prime for $25 a pound.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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As far as dry-aged steaks at the grocery store, I can't shake the sneaking suspicion that the dry-aged strip steaks at Whole Foods Market (at $17.99 a pound) are just the regular strip steaks (at $14.99 a pound) that they didn't sell from two days ago.

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Steven, how do you explain the differences in quality of the steaks at Smith & Wollensky? I remember fondly your memorable restaurant review of Smith & Wollensky, where you had 5-6 levels of quality in their steaks, for your different visits.

------------

Steve

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