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where to buy whole brisket in L.A.?

l
LoRezSkyline Jul 2, 2007 06:49 PM

so i'm planning on smoking my first brisket for the 4th, and i'm trying to find a flat cut brisket around at least 7-10 lbs. so it won't dry out during the cooking process! problem is, the people at the meat depts. of all the local supermarkets i've been calling around to have either barely spoken a word of english (jon's), been a 16-year-old incompetent kid without the patience to help me (ralph's) or only sell smaller pre-cut pieces of brisket around 2-3 lbs. (von's) that i know will end up tasting like dried-out beef jerky (blech...) after 8 hours on the grill. can anyone help? i've not called mayfair and whole foods yet, as i was hoping to avoid paying through the nose for it - but at this point, i just want to find a decent-sized cut of meat...

thank you in advance!!!

  1. c
    chef74 Jul 2, 2007 06:59 PM

    costco actually has a really good meat department - they have large briskets there. Or you can try "jetro" it is the cash and carry side of restaurant depot. (you need a business licence to get into rest. depot, but I believe that the general public can shop at jetro - it is on Jefferson just east of hauser)
    You can always try Harvey Guss's Meats - maybe a bit more expensive than the other 2, a specialty butcher who sells to restaurants, but I think that the public can buy from him, too.

    1. JAB Jul 2, 2007 07:10 PM

      I have had good luck at Smart& Final for briskets and pork butt/shoulder. By the way, good luck. 1 hr. per lb. at about 180 degrees and you'll be golden.

      1. Professor Salt Jul 2, 2007 07:21 PM

        I'll also second Smart & Final. They normally have the "packer cut," a slab that contains both the leaner flat, and the fattier point cuts.

        The Costcos near me usually sell flats only. Only occasionally will I see the brisket sold in its entirety. YMMV.

        chef74 also has good suggestions. I normally buy the USDA Choice grade Angus briskets at Restaurant Depot (wholesale only, tho). If they carry it at Jetro, you'll be in good shape.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Professor Salt
          n
          nosh Jul 2, 2007 08:32 PM

          Another rec for the whole brisket in the cryovac bag at Smart & Final. May be more than you need with the flat and the point sections, but the price is right -- if I remember correctly well under $2/lb. Sure there is a lot of fat and waste, but the quarter-inch trim that the supers advertise is useless for a long-cooked brisket.

        2. b
          Burger Boy Jul 2, 2007 08:32 PM

          Try Hows in North Hollywood, Smart & Final or Cost Co. I thonk Jetro & Restaurant Depot both require a Business License or Resale #.

          1. m
            mc michael Jul 2, 2007 08:46 PM

            The key thing for smoking is that you want the fat cap on the brisket (don't let them do you a "favor" and cut it off). You place this up on the grill while smoking. No fat cap, no purchase, regardless of price.

            1 Reply
            1. re: mc michael
              JAB Jul 2, 2007 09:07 PM

              Agreed. Self basting!

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