Beef terminology—phrases like all-natural, grass-fed, grass-finished, organic, and Wagyu—can be tricky to understand. Thankfully, upscale grocery chains such as Central Market and Whole Foods publish guides to their quality standards that can help you navigate the meat case. For a more personal touch, a growing list of independent specialty shops around the state offer tightly curated selections from local producers. Here’s a sampling of some of the best.
1. The Chopping Block, Webster: all-natural Wagyu steaks from Rosewood Ranches, in Ennis.
2. Dai Due, Austin: all-natural Wagyu from Peeler Farms, in Floresville.
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3. Deep Cuts, Dallas: all-natural Akaushi from HeartBrand Beef, in Flatonia; all-natural black Angus from 44 Farms, in Cameron; all-natural Wagyu from Rosewood Ranches; and grass-fed beef from 2S Ranch, in Palo Pinto County.
4. Hirsch’s Meats, Plano: hormone-free Wagyu from A Bar N Ranch, in Celina, and HeartBrand.
5. Knife Butcher, Plano: steakhouse-quality, dry-aged (for 45 to 240 days) ribeyes and sirloins from 44 Farms and HeartBrand.
6. Local Yocal Farm to Market, McKinney: all-natural Angus from 44 Farms; grass-finished steaks from owner Matt Hamilton’s ranch.
7. The Meat Board, Fort Worth: Wagyu A Bar N Ranch steaks.
8. The Meat Shop, Dallas: all-natural Rosewood Ranches Wagyu.
9. Salt & Time, Austin: dry-aged 44 Farms beef and Peeler Farms Wagyu.
10. Smoke Shack Meat Market, San Antonio: all-natural Angus from Dean & Peeler Premium Beef, in Floresville; grass-fed special orders from Parker Creek Ranch, in D’Hanis.
11. Tall City Meat Market, Midland: various Dean & Peeler steaks, plus Wagyu from Peeler Farms.
12. Tri-County Meat Market, Fair Oaks Ranch: all-natural HeartBrand beef.
13. Woods and Cuds Natural Meats, Alvarado: A Bar N Ranch Wagyu.