It is important both ethically and from a quality and flavor standpoint to source meat from reputable sources, farmers and ranchers that commit their practices to healthy, sustainable, pasture-raised animals in order to provide the best quality products.
Is it worth buying such high quality and then dry-age? This question is controversially discussed in various forums. Some are of the opinion that not everyone can afford premium meat and the taste can also be improved with inferior quality by maturing and marinating. However, various tests have proven that in the case of inferior quality meat, Dry Aging didn’t make much of a difference. Starting with a great quality product is the only way to ensure a great quality finished product.
At DRYAGER™, our guiding principle is that only good things can become great.
Naturally Raised Cattle
Not always do we have to have exotic cattle breeds to produce really great meat. Thus, also locally bred cattle are a good source for a good starting product. Get to know which butcher supports local farmers who raise free-range cattle, which graze and feed as naturally as possible. Willow grass, maize, alfalfa, hay, mash, minerals are all things that a cow should receive as the best feed. Pure grass feeding ensures interesting, dynamic and distinctive flavors. Keep in mind that what goes into the cow, goes into the meat, goes into the consumer.
Some smaller farmers produce incredibly good quality, such as American Wagyu or US Black Angus. Both breeds make the hearts of meat aficionados race. But even the common Hereford can be a delight to the gastronom. If you buy quality, you should definitely consider Dry Aging.
Good meat, enjoyed in moderation, is worth the money spent, and the enjoyment of a great steak once a week is more enjoyable than poor quality every day.