Thursday, November 29, 2012

What's on the Grill: Samuel Adams Boston Lager Cut

It goes without saying:

I love steak and I love beer.  

Bite of Steak

So, when I learned Samuel Adams teamed up with a meat purveyor to produce an original cut of beef, I saw stars.  Granted, stars with nice marbling and a healthy amount of char, but nonetheless, stars.

Now if you told me CoorsMiller teamed up with JTM to make an original burger, color me a little skeptical.  I smell a cheap publicity stunt.  

However, knowing Jim Koch's love of good beer and dedication to the movement, making a beer and meat pairing by actually having a hand in crafting the meat is a pretty neat proposition.

The Boston Lager Cut

The Samuel Adams Boston Lager Cut is a signature cut of beef developed by Jake Dickson, owner of Dickson's Farmstead Meats in New York and is available everywhere through the online meat purveyor, Robinson's Prime Reserve, out of Louisville, Kentucky.

The Cut runs at a 45 degree angle to the cap of the top sirloin muscle, yielding a tightly grained steak perfect for grilling and slicing. This carving method optimizes the Cut's cooking properties and flavor potential, enhancing the pairing capabilities.

I have to say, I agree.

I find it interesting that for as long as we have been butchering cattle, there are still relatively "new" ways of looking at, or interpreting, meat.  The Tri-tip and Flat Iron are two other prime (no pun intended) examples.

My treasured meat parcel showed up from Robinson's and resembled a portable refrigerator, minus the plug.  Nestled within the box and its styrofoam confines were two freezer packs.

Re-Freez-R-Brix

Removing the frozen packs gave way to the box.

Robinson's Prime Reserve Box

 Then, there it was.  The mother lode.

The Gift Pack

Robinson's sells gift packs which include several cuts of meat, as well as Samuel Adams Boston Lager Pint Glasses.  For a proper tasting, proper glassware is an absolute must.

Samuel Adams Pint Glasses

I like just about anything wrapped in butcher paper and the presentation here, along with the butcher twine, was top notch.

Samuel Adams Boston Lager Cut

The cuts arrived frozen and vacuumed sealed.  They went through a relatively quick water bath defrost before I prepped them.

Samuel Adams consulting Chef David Burke recommends a light seasoning of only salt and pepper.  I couldn't agree more.  Although I love a healthy rub, I almost always adhere to my minimalist approach to steak seasoning.  Even though I use "a lot" of seasoning, it almost never includes more than three ingredients, or what I call, salt, pepper, and a third.  

Spice & Beef

For these cuts, I wanted the meat to shine through so I followed Chef Burke's recommendation: salt & pepper.

Rubbing the Steaks

With the grill prepped for direct high, I dropped the steaks on the grates.  I like my meat medium rare and because of the size of these steaks, it's a fast cook.  No more than 4 minutes a side.  

Boston Lager Cut on the Grill

With the steaks down, my pint glass was filled.

Samuel Adams Boston Lager

If you have not had the chance to drink from one of these glasses, you are missing out.  Yes, I like my dimpled pint mugs, my pilsners, and my tulips, but I love these.  They really are great beer drinking glasses.  They are made for your mouth.

With the steaks pulled from the grill at 130 F and allowed to rest for about 4-5 minutes, dinner was served.

Boston Lager Cut Dinner

The meat was incredible.  In terms of taste, I would put it somewhere between a strip and a flat iron.  The texture was closer to a strip, but the flavor more like a flat iron.  Seeing I like both cuts, the net result was all good.

Boston Lager Cut Medium Rare

The Boston Lager is a natural accompaniment to grilled meat.  Although I usually prefer a solid ale with beef, the unique characteristics of this hopped up lager work really well.  

So, would I order again?  Absolutely.  Yes.  

In fact, I had a website hiccup when ordering from Robinson's.  I sent an email, on the weekend no less, and had a speedy reply and remedy that day.  Their customer service is top notch.

If you are looking for a Christmas gift for that beer/beef lover, I heartily recommend checking out Robinson's.  To receive a 30% discount on a package order of Boston Lager Cuts, use code SAMADAMS at checkout.  I rarely order meat online, but this experience has certainly changed that.

I'm always looking for something new to grill, especially on the steak front.  Now, I've found it.

Note: Quite unexpectedly, Robinson's provided me a gift pack sample of meat.  The grilling, however, was all me.

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