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Nov 13, 2007 05:37 AM

Venison for Thanksgiving


MY BF and I are hosting Thanksgiving this year for the first time. We are looking to try out some new things and he would really like venison loin - not instead of the turkey, only in addition to. Unfortunately, the venison we have had in the past has been given to us by friends who live in Vermont. Does anyone know where we could order or get venison loin in the Boston area? I know Savenor's in Cambridge has it, but it is $22/lb. I just thought I would see if there was anywhere else before forking over that kind of money - looking for about 3 lbs. Thanks!!

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  1. Having bought venison at Savenor's, I'd say it's worth the cash. It will be farm-raised, far less gamy than wild venison. But I'd also give Whole Foods a call.

    I've also made a pâté of venison with a sauce that included juniper and red currants; I wonder where that recipe went?

    1. While Savenor's can indeed be pricey, $22 a pound for venison tenderloin really isn't bad.

      I suppose you can find it a few dollars cheaper elsewhere, but I can vouch for Savenor's quality. In fact, I have their venison at my Pats' tailgates quite often.

      BTW, when you cook it, be sure not to go past medium-rare at most. Venison (especially the loin) is extremely lean. Overcooking equals very dry meat.

      5 Replies
        1. re: Aromatherapy

          Exactly. I go to about 140. In fact, take it off the heat a good five degrees beforehand. It'll continue to "cook" as it rests. It usually gets to about 150 after 10-12 minutes of rest, which I personally find perfect (even if the FDA doesn't).

          1. re: Bostonbob3

            I cook venison to about 121 and beef/lamb to 128. Veal I will cook to 132 and pork to 135. 110 to 120 is rare; 130-135 medium; 140 medium well and 150 well done. Many store bought thermometers will say rare is 140. That's due to liability issues. We're supposed to cook beef to a minimum of 140 according to the feds.

            1. re: almansa

              Heh. Well, according to my meat thermometer (and my many, many experiences cooking vension), when I pull the venison off heat at 140, it's medium rare on the quite rare side. I suppose that's the problem with thermometers (and even ovens): they're all calebrated differently or go all wacky at some point.

              1. re: Bostonbob3

                The first steak, hanger from Sav's was pulled off a hot fire at about 105-110f..and rested for a few mins


                This was a nicely marbled Black Angus ribeye from Golden Goose..pulled a few degrees warmer.

                That's using an electric instant read thermomer


      1. How many are you serving for dinner? If the venison is "in addition to" turkey, you may want to calibrate your quantity based on how you plan to serve it. In my previous lives in Texas and Pennsylvania, we would slice venison loins (backstraps) into 1/4 inch medallions and quick fry them in a skillet with a little olive oil and Worcestershire. We called them "speedies" because they only cooked a minute a side and we could whip up many batches of speedie appetizer plates in the course of a football or poker game.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Veggo

          Thanks for the tips. We will probably go with Savenor's, I was just wondering if there was anything else in the area. We are serving 11-12 for Thanksgiving, but I would say 9 would not touch venison with a ten foot pole. I am not worried about having enough if I only buy a couple pounds. Most will stick to the white meat on the turkey.

          1. re: Lowren710

            Don't know if it's any closer to you, but Savenor's on Charles Street has venison, too. Actually, if you did a little Beacon Hill-Cambridge Street stroll, you could check-out both Savenors and Whole Foods within a few minutes.

        2. Check Whole Foods out. They should be carrying them but i'm not sure of the price.