Why Are Similar Beef Cuts Priced Differently?
There are two main breeds of cattle known as Angus and Wagyu. Each steak comes from a different country of origin and it can either be excellent at its peak or not that good at their nadir.
However, steaks are not uniform or identical products like hamburgers. The fact that you purchased a $50 steak does not mean that it will taste better than a $10 steak because they might be prepared differently. People often expect the worst when they are offered a low-priced steak only to be surprised by the taste because they were judging by cost. Although a friend could probably talk you into trying a $10 steak, you can find it more delicious and inviting because of the method used by the chef during preparation. One of the primary reasons why similar cuts of beef are priced differently is the cost of production. The taste may vary depending on the cattle’s genetics through feed, butchery, slaughter, aging, and cooking expertise.
Factors That Determine the Difference Between Great Steak and Average Steak
- Cut of Beef
The best steaks are derived from four cuts of beef located at the lower back of the animal. These beef cuts are the tenderloin or filet mignon, ribeye steak, sirloin or top sirloin, and the strip steaks such as T-bone or porterhouse. Other beef cuts like the flank, chuck, and round steak make more affordable steaks. Although they are not terrific, they are best used when cut into smaller pieces, pounded, or marinated.
- Steak Quality
Steaks are often sold with a grading indicator to determine the part of the animal where it was cut. The highest grade in the USA is Prime, followed by Choice and Select. Prime is also the top-quality grade in Canada, with the next lower grades AAA, AA, and A. Regardless of the grade mark indicator, what you will be looking for in a perfect steak is a highly marbled and counter firm meat with a dark brick hue.
- Method of Preparation
Rare or medium rare steak is very thick and patted dry before preparation. It needs to be salted ahead of time or as soon as it is bought. Early and adequate salting is one of the distinguishing factors between a tasty steak and a dull one. A steak that is still cold at the center never cooks right so it is important for the chef to bring it a room temperature before cooking. The steak needs to be seasoned lightly and cooked fast and hot. Allowing the steak to rest before serving allows even distribution of juices through the meat making them delicious and tasty.
Is a $50 Steak Worth Buying Over a $10 Steak?
The answer could be yes if you go to a dedicated steak restaurant. There are higher chances that these types of restaurants look for the best cuts of beef that are prepared by professional chefs to meet the high standards of the brand. The primary reason for a steak to be priced at $50 starts is due to the cost of production based on the beef grade, aging process and expertise in cooking. This does not mean that a $10 steak will not taste great because the main difference comes from the cooking method. The steak origin and cost of production is the primary reason why a steak can be priced at $10.
A great steak does not come cheap, and a bargain steak can still taste good if prepared well. The primary distinction in steak pricing comes from the country of origin and the total cost of production. A low-priced cut of beef can be turned into a delicious treat depending on the method of preparation to achieve the level of doneness you are looking for.