Hi Chowhounds, there have been many discussions in the past on this forum regarding good retail butchers. But I've never really seen anything discussed about the wholesale outfit called United Meat Co. at 1040 Bryant in SF.
Yours truly got a Weber chimney starter just last weekend. And when that sucker got my Lazzari mesquite charcoals ready in a dynamic display of jet engine and vortex effects to produce some hot glowing coals within 10 short minutes using no icky starter fluids, I was hypnotized and started getting flashbacks, man.
Yup, my imagination got me thinking of making some seriously good steaks seared over high heat *outdoors* on the grill (vs. indoors on the cast iron skillet left on high for 5 minutes so that it's super smokin' hot to sear the meat the right away, but then also having the broomstick ready in the other hand to reset the fire alarm with all the smoke it produces and the grease it splatters...but that's another topic).
Like I said, flashbacks, man. They brought me back to memories of an article written in the Examiner back in 1998 regarding where to buy good beef around town. Not the stuff at Safeway or Albertsons, or even most of what's at Andronico's. Yeah, yeah, I know there are some decent retail butchers around town. And yeah, you can buy that stuff online from Lobel's from NY and max out your credit cards, but you can't really see it before you buy it.
The reason why I remembered the article about United Meat is because it said they supplied the prime and choice beef to most of the top end restaurants in San Francisco. And although they are a wholesale operation, you could still call them up and special order cuts of beef with 2 days notice, no minimum, and still pay wholesale prices. Huh, wholesale prices? And you don't have to buy the whole cow??
Hey, that rang a bell that kept this article in the back of my mind for a good 6 years. I'm the type of person who wants the best for the cheapest prices -- so that's why you won't see me grocery shopping at Draeger's very often (as much as I love hanging out at that place). :)
So my question to the Chowhound community is: Have you ever purchased any beef directly from United Meat Co., and if so, how did the cost compare, and how was the quality??
Based on the lack of discussions on this company in the past, there might not be much feedback. And who knows, I might just have to buy some beef from those guys, and find out myself. Much appreciated in advance.