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A Great Steak, but what is its name in your area?

There is a cut of steak that I've not seen discussed on CH. Its name engenders immediate confusion. In my area it is sold as "Delmonico", but it is NOT a ribeye or a strip (the cuts more widely called Delmonico). It is instead the tip three inches of the chuck where the portion known as "chuck tender" meets up at the anterior end of the ribeye portion of the loin ribeye. I can find no pics of it on the web, and its nomenclature is totally swamped with synonyms.

It has a diameter of about 4" (since it is the tapered end of the chuck fillet), always sold at least 1" thick. The muscle strands are bunched and chewy, but each fiber bundle of 2-3 mm separates readily. It's a loose chew, somewhat like the unrelated hanger steak; not at all like the homogenous compact chew of the thinner bundles of a strip steak. There are 2 or 3 small veins of connective silverskin and fat.

Does anyone know this cut? What is it called in your area?

There are only 2 cuts of this per carcass, one per side of the animal, from each apical end of the chuck fillet.

If anyone else eats this cut, and agrees that it's one of the best, could you share a pic or a better description so that we may be better informed?

Here's a nice site for pics of steak cuts, but "my Delmonico" is not pictured:


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    1. re: hummingbird

      tri-tip is usually about 10x12x8" in a roughly triangular shape, about 2-1/2" thick at the largest part. usually about 3-4 #. Silver skin across the underside, and a 1/2" layer of solid fat on the outer side, with some marbeling between the fiber bundles.

      tri-tip--it's what's for dinner tonight!

      1. re: toodie jane

        As I understand it. It comes from the top sirloin.


      2. These might help (it's definitely not the tri-tip):

        1.) http://www.askthemeatman.com/images/a...

        2.) http://www.steakperfection.com/delmon...

        <Added> or lastly, contact via an email utilizing this link:
        ... http://www.beefinfo.org/rc_chuck.cfm

        1. I always thought it was a ribeye. Maybe it is the first cut of ribeye with the most amount of cap attached to it. Cap being the chewy outer edge of the ribeye that is flavorful and fatty but does separate easily.

          1 Reply
          1. re: ESNY

            I was thinking that it might be the front end of the rib primal also (around rib 6) or maybe just in front of that, so a rib eye of sorts but not a "true" rib eye, which would have to come from between ribs 6 and 12. The "first" cut is the other (back) end, by the way - ribs 9-12. The cap, which I agree is the best piece of beef on the cow, maxes out at around rib 8 - forward of there it starts to get mixed up with a bunch of other muscles that aren't as good, and back of there it starts to decrease in size, practically disappearing by rib 12.

          2. Maybe you are thinking of the culotte steak. I don't know much about it except it's part of the top sirloin and there are only 2 cuts per steer.

            1. All of the steaks mentioned are good ones: Tri-tip, culotte (both from the sirloin) and the ribeye cap.

              I called the butcher (a local-only chain) and found that the "delmonico" I'm talking about does indeed come from the chuck primal. "Primal" is the huge section that is cut and cryovac'd at the carcass cutter. It seems that most "middleman" butchers these days order primals from their suppliers, but at least that's better than the walmart rectangular nitrogen packed distributed cut.

              I asked the local cutters, and then their supervising "butcher," for the NAMP (National Association of Meat Producers) number, which would have hopefully given us a standard number for a request at each local butcher. NAMP numbers seem to be used for standardized communication between suppliers to food service institution/restaurant buyers to guarantee clear communication. My local chain butcher did not know the NAMP #, nor did he know the anatomical name of the muscle in question. And that's okay: what these folks do is cut cut cut all day, from primals received, and label them according to their local names of each cut.

              But, it is clear that the steak in question is cut from the Chuck primal at the area right next to where the Ribeye primal would meet up to the chuck.

              So, if those of you with a good relation with a butcher want to give it a try, then talk to them. The muscle structure is very similar to the ribeye cap, perhaps even the same muscle, but less fat-lubricated at this section. Don't be turned off by the fact that it is a "chuck" steak.

              It would be neat if someone were able to find a focused butcher who was able to share the NAMP number with us.

              Extra stuff: when speaking of the premiere ribeye cap: here's a link to make your jaws shake and tremble and your fingers clamp around an imaginary steak knife:


              3 Replies
              1. re: FoodFuser

                Where in the world did you see this cut and did you actually eat it?

                The trimmed ribeye in the link made me salivate...yummmmm

                1. re: FoodFuser

                  Lately I have cooked a few standing rib roasts and have become absolutely enamored with what is called the 'cap' in that link, but I have grown up calling it the deckle (my uncle is a retired butcher- his term). Damn- where has this thing been all my life? ;) (Answer- underneath my nose the whole time, though I never really appreciated it until now.). The intense flavor, the marbling, the luscious texture- it's all perfect. My new goal is to get one of those ribeye cap rolls, or, hell, make one myself- this way I won't have to trade with the other people at the table, pink interior meat for the deckle.

                2. I think you are talking about cut IMPS/NAMP # 184 D, known as Top Sirloin Cap. It is often confused in the USA with Tri Tip. It is a prime cut for Brazilians for churrasco, a favorite. It is far more tender and flavorful than tri tip. 184 D comes from the top sirloin. Tri tip comes from the bottom sirloin. Brazilians call 184 D "picanha", pronounced peecáhnya.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: wancan

                    Funny, there is a con-current thread on best steaks. I mentioned picanha which I had a taste of in Belem, Brazil, a few months ago. The diagram on the restaurant's menu, however, placed the cut at the top of the rump.

                  2. Here's a link to a trick my mom has been using for years. breaking down chuck roasts on her own for a song to carve out the Delmonico and meat for stir-frying from the tough stew meat, learned from butcher Merle Ellis.

                    Delmonico is also called "market steak", and it is from the chuck and the tender cut right next to the prime rib. We would never buy it on its own, but carve it off the chuck.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Melanie Wong

                      This must be one of those regional differences in meat cut terminology. Here in the Northeast, a Delmonico is (and is more commonly called) a rib eye, essentially a boneless rib steak, which by definition must come from behind (i.e., posterior to) rib 6, where the rib primal begins.

                    2. To the best of my knowledge it is a chuck tender. The meat market where I used to work bought them separately to grind into hamburger - which was delicious. They didn't sell them to the public, although on occasion, the chuck cuts they would receive (to be used for chuck steaks and roasts) were more "primal" and the "tender" was still on it. The butcher would sell it to me for a song and I was in heaven!!! In CT, a Delmonico is a ribeye. This cut has nothing to do with the sirloin, as other posts may suggest, but I think you already knew that ;-)

                      1. It sounds like the first few cuts from the CHUCK ROLL, When Trimmed of excess external fat resembles the "Ribeye." In Oklahoma, this is often market as a "Po'" Boy Ribeye, but it is technically part of the chuck, however, the LD muscle is still present in the that part of the chuck for about 3-4 inches, which is the same major muscle as in the ribeye and strip. It is on of the best value steaks available if you can find it.

                        1. its the chuck-eye delmonico, its attached to the end of the rib-eye

                          1. i think you are talking about a flat iron roast and or steaks

                            1. It sounds like a zabuton (not an official term), which is essentially where the rib continues into the chuck. Not very many producers differentiate as there are only two to four per carcass. Usually it gets processed as chuck. It's a great cut. I actually like to separate the muscles and cook them individually. The true zabuton is one of the muscles, shaped like a pillow, popular in Japan.


                              6 Replies
                              1. re: almansa

                                OP here. Yes, from the chuck, right where the ribeye tapers down. Yes zabuton.

                                Here's the steak pictured from the beef myology site.

                                Using that pic, across the middle, look for the thickest longest piece of fat. The steak my market cuts uses just the 2 muscles above that (longissimus and complexus), and trim it free from the bone.

                                1. re: FoodFuser

                                  And you're right, it's a fantastic - and generally VERY cheap, relatively - cut of steak. Not the prettiest steak on the plate you'll ever see, but flavorful and tender.

                                  1. re: shanagain

                                    Great description, and add to it that you can feel the bundled muscle fibers as you easily chew through them. Cost here is routinely 3.99 per pound.

                                    Almansa, your pic of zabuton was a very well marbled cut, which visually clouds the distinction between individual muscles as compared to the myology site. Do you think we are on the same cut? Also, is the "pillow shaped" fave in Japan the longissimus?

                                    I went to lots of yaki-nikus in Japan, but always the kind where there was a haze of smoke and grease in the air and walls and ceilings that showed it. Good eats for a hungry guy in his 20's who had no idea of beef cuts. I grilled a lot of tongue, and loved it. It would be fun to go to a high-end yakiniku, but actually I've found that with a butane table stove you can build your own here at home, using gossamer-sliced ribeye.

                                    1. re: FoodFuser

                                      The zabuton is the longissimus - correct. My friend, Eric Brandt who markets this particular cut - the foray into the chuck - calls it a bone-in zabuton for lack of, well, any term. Your original "delmonico" is as close as any. Here's a picture of the Brandt zabuton presented:


                                      If the link doesn't go directly to the cut, just scroll through the pictures.

                                      It's the "rhinoceros chop."

                                      1. re: almansa

                                        Didn't find a pic, but the menu lists it as 40 ounces.

                                        Sigh... I guess I'll have to talk to the butcher and see what the entire cross-section tastes like.


                                2. re: almansa

                                  I know, very old thread, but I was facinated with the "Zabuton" cut. The name just makes me laugh. I found the cut at the Snake River website. I wonder if this is what the OP was looking for?


                                  1. here in California, my market buys something marketed as a Baja Steak; was told it comes from "the shoulder". It is about 10-12" long, slightly tapered at one end and more blunt on the other, about 2 1/2 '" across the blunt end. Muscle bundles run the length. It has silverskin whcih is mostly removed by the time it hits the case.

                                    Really rich flavor not unlike a tri tip. Best cooked fast and served medium rare. Delicious and perfectly sized for two generous but not huge servings. BBQ's very well over oak or briquettes and in a pinch in a hot cast iron in a hot oven.

                                    1. According to Beef Foodservice.com, a Delmonico Steak is NAMP# 1116D, which is a Beef Chuck, Chuck Eye Roll Steak, Boneless. This item is cut from the chuck primal, not the rib primal. I hope that helps.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: ChefErik03

                                        Interestingly, in the glossary of NAMP's "The Meat Buyer's Guide" [2007 edition], it defines the DELMONICO STEAK as follows: "A boneless steak cut from the beef rib (tip on or tip off)."