Melt in Your Mouth Taste
Can you even read about gourmet steak without getting hungry? Steak is any one of a number of center cuts of beef. Some of the more well-known cuts of steak include:
- porterhouse (or T-bone)
- top sirloin
- filet mignon
Other popular cuts include:
- rib eye
- New York strip (or striploin)
- chateaubriand or tenderloin
Gourmet steak can be cooked rare, medium or well-done. In general, finer cuts (such as the filet mignon and the New York strip) are best enjoyed rare or medium, while fattier steaks such as the porterhouse or T-bone might best be eaten well done.
The U.S. produces some of the finest beef in the world, though Kobe beef from Japan is very highly esteemed in gourmet circles. Black Angus is another name popular with beef gourmets.
Beef is graded to be fair to ranchers with high standards. Grades of beef in order from lowest to highest are:
Marbling is what gourmet chefs and meat inspectors look for when seeking a quality gourmet steak. Marbling is the thin lines of fat (not gristle, which is hard cartilage) that run through finer cuts of steak, such as the New York strip or top sirloin.
Aged beef has been hung in a cooler or refrigerator for 21 to 28 days as a way of naturally tenderizing it. Gourmet steak lovers seek out aged beef, knowing its guaranteed tenderness.
Filet mignon is cut from tenderloin and often wrapped in bacon. It is usually small-in 4 oz or 6 oz. sizes. Its close cousin, loved by many gourmets, is beef tenderloin, which when properly aged goes by the prestigious name of chateaubriand.
Mail-order gourmet steaks are among the best you can find, and they also make an excellent gourmet gift.