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Best Place to Buy Porterhouse or NY Strip Steak for the Grill


I'm grilling a special meal on Sunday. A request was put in for steak. I rarely eat steak, so looking for some help on where to go for four of the very best. Will drive if worth it - 50 mile radius of Twin Cities.


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  1. I've noted in previous threads that Widmer's in St. Paul has a great reputation. Maybe search the threads for them?

    1. We have been extremely satisfied with the Porterhouses we have been getting from Lunds & Byerly's, even when they have been on sale at $7.99/lb the meat has been tender, delicious with good true beef flavor. Be sure to get your porterhouse from the butcher counter where they have the nice thick ones. The ones wrapped up in the meat aisle are often a thinner cut.

      1 Reply
      1. re: bkmnus

        You're going to get 100's of answers with just about every damn butcher shop in town by the end of this thread. Since I live in Saint Paul, here are my suggestions for the East Side of the river.

        Big Box Retailer - Lunds or Byerlys
        Big Box Retail Club - Costco
        Special Cuts/Events -Angus Meat Market on Highway 61
        Best Value - Morelli's which is by cash or check only. No credit cards

        Let us know if you need advice on grilling the steak. BTW: I think Ribeye is the king of grilled meats. Nothing beats a good bone-in ribeye which is why its the one you see most often at restaurants. I'd consider that before porterhouse or NY strip. Just my two cents.

      2. Clancey's.

        haven't tried them yet but Costco does carry Prime Ribeye, look good. To echo Db, ribeye is definitely the way to go.

        1. +2 on the ribeye.

          You don't have to go very far. Ignore the fact that it's a chain grocery store and consider Kowalski's. They have USDA Prime.

          Clancey's is a great bet.

          I used to live up two blocks from Widmer's, and still stop in there every now and then. Perfectly fine, honest-to-goodness butchering, and your guest(s) of honor will enjoy, but it's not as good as some of the other places being noted.

          Byerly's/Lunds also has good stuff, but they stopped carrying Prime a while back (if that's really important to you).

          1. I got some really spectacular Wagyu-style beef (Australian) from Kowalski's last month.

            1. My first choice is Angus in Maplewood.

              However, the best ribeye I've ever made was from Clancey's. You'll pay for it, but they are outstanding.

              1 Reply
              1. re: BigE

                Jerry's Foods in either Edina or Eden Prairie carry prime beef. They do an excellent job and have great meat; the meat department will cut your meat for you too. They have great service.

                Kowalski's has a special type of beef they carry too (like Kobe) called Wagyu. Spendy, but very good! Kowalski's also carries Thousand Hills grass fed beef.

                I also prefer ribeyes on the grill compared to strip or porterhouse steak. I think the marbeling adds that extra flavor.

                FYI, not all Costcos carry prime beef and it is frozen so you will need to plan ahead.

              2. Clancey's and the Co-ops carry locally raised, grass-fed beef, which, to me, is the healthiest and best tasting meat, and well worth the extra cost.

                Co-op locations:

                3 Replies
                1. re: lizpeck

                  The key there is grass-fed. Not everyone will agree that is the best tasting meat including most restaurants who may say their beef is grass fed, but is actually finished with corn. If you aren't eating grass-fed normally and the people eating it aren't familiar with it, I'd stay away from it especially at the price-points we are talking about. The taste difference is obvious and some folks won't care for it if they are used to eating corn-fed/finished their entire lives.

                  1. re: Db Cooper

                    In my experience grass fed is leaner and thus sometimes more dry.

                    1. re: brlattim

                      Because it is leaner, I would strongly discourage any dinner guest of mine from ordering grass fed beef to be cooked past medium rare. I will grant I think cooking any steak past medium rare is a big mistake but with grass fed beef its gonna get dry and tough really quick.

                2. Widmers, hands down. I just did a party and grilled 25 bone-in ribeyes form Widmers. Unbelievable quality, and good pricing. Their porterhouses are superb as well. And they will custom cut steaks to your desired thickness.

                  Clancey's is also good. It is more expensive.

                  I'm not sure I would recommend grass-fed for the grill.

                  1. I like Costco if I need the larger quantity (4 or 5 steaks) or have the time vac pac what I don't need at the moment. They do sometimes have prime beef and it often in the case fresh. The meat there is very freshly cut. That's a good thing in some ways, but I like to let set uncovered on a rack (above a pan) in the bottom of the fridge for a day (or up to several) to age and lose some of the water moisture.

                    For smaller purchases, i like the meat they cut at Everett s in South Mpls at Cedar and 38th. Its a nice old fashioned meat counter with good quality meat at a reasonable price everyday (e.g. $10/lb for nice strip steaks.) I find the prices at lunds quite high unless it happens to a promotion when they will have a reasonable price.

                    If you are looking for one steak per person for grilling I think strip steaks are a good choice. In my experience the extra fat of Ribeye steaks on the the grill can cause to many flareups. I prefer to cook rib eyes in a cast iron pan. Also from a portioning point of view, you should be able to find reasonably sized (8 to 12oz ea.) strip steak.

                    Good Luck.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: dalewest

                      Morelli's in St Paul will go round for round with any of the trendy co-ops and Chowhound favorite butcher shops. And I agree grass fed beef is not for everyone and strongly disagree it is the tastiest. Calling any red meat healthy too is just wrong. Also regardless of what Lund's or Kowalski's may tell you there is zero chance of the common consumer scoring real Kobe or Wagyu beef here in the states. It just isn't happening. So before you spend that extra $10-20 a pound do a little research.

                      1. re: Fudist

                        Not to get into an ideological battle here, but grass-fed, or pastured, meat has been proven to contain many beneficial antioxidants and good fats.

                        "Eating moderate amounts of grass-fed meat for only 4 weeks will give you healthier levels of essential fats, according to a 2011 study in the British Journal of Nutrition. The British research showed that healthy volunteers who ate grass-fed meat increased their blood levels of omega-3 fatty acids and decreased their level of pro-inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids. These changes are linked with a lower risk of a host of disorders, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, depression, and inflammatory disease"

                        Regarding flavor, while grass-fed beef does not have the rich, unctuous flavor of grain-fed beef, to me it tastes more like I remember beef tasting when I was a kid (many years ago,) with a true minerally, slightly gamey flavor.

                        1. re: lizpeck

                          That would be a good way to describe it lizpeck. It's slightly gamey. So if that is your thing (I know many people who love it), go for it. Just do not overcook it. Burgers take way less time on the grill in my experience. Something like 2 min per side. I got some brisket for my wedding and smoked it....it came out dry....but I blame myself for that as much as the grass fed product. Typically I use grass fed for things like chili, tacos, or casseroles and use cord fed for eating by itself like steaks.

                    2. Thanks for all the feedback!

                      I've decided to get bone in ribeye from Clancy's. And I'll pick up some nice wood briquets from Coastal Seafood. It will be a fine going away party!!!


                      p.s. I love the double smoked ham from Angus....

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: rp1760

                        Go to the butcher counter at Seward Co-op...The carry the same beef as Clancey's and it is always cheaper, and they can cut to desired thickness. It is sourced from Hill and Vale in Wykoff, grass fed and grain finished. They vary carcass to carcass, some I have seen especially before the cold weather hits would grade out way above prime, but usually not that nicely marbled. They have been my go-to beef since I moved here, and I've tried it all...

                      2. RJ's Meats in Hudson, WI is a top notch butcher shop in every aspect. Every cut they sell is superb. They have won 100+ champion and grand champion titles for their meats / sausages.

                        1. What a meal.

                          Got the ribeyes. Grilled on a hot grill over wood charcoal. After bringing the beautiful steaks to room temperature, and salting and peppering them at the very last moment before throwing on the grill. Along with garlic bread. Flareups, yes. But that's part of grilling. Medium rare, off the grill, served with the bread and broccoli supreme (broccoli with bacon and a bunch of other stuff but the other stuff doesn't matter much because bacon makes everything better).

                          Had to push my guests out the door. :)

                          Thanks, again, for your help.