T-Bones Natural Meats - F.A.Q.


Do you know where your beef comes from and how it was raised?


Most beef, or meat in general , purchased at a grocery store or even the local butcher, comes from large feedlots in the Midwest. Retailers place their orders and receive their shipment with no idea of the animals age, final weight, what it was fed, or if it received growth hormones or antibiotics.
Our Circle 'Y’ Cattle Co. cattle are raised naturally on small prairie farms in Manitoba, Canada. Calves are born in the spring and spend the summer and fall grazing with their mothers, eating grass and oats (creep feed). In late October, the calves are weaned, then  are fed a forage based ration until their weight increases to about 900 pounds. Cattle are provided sheltered feeding and bedding areas with unlimited clean straw, as well as full access to clean well water. They spend 3 to 6 months on a diet of forages ground with barley until they reach a weight of about 1100 - 1300 pounds.


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Does age make a difference in flavor and tenderness?


Aging is a carefully controlled process that holds the meat at specific temperature and humidity levels for a set period of time. This allows naturally occurring meat enzymes to break down some of the connective tissue. Proper aging of beef can dramatically improve tenderness and flavor. Consumers should look for beef that is aged 14 to 21 days. Marbling refers to the amount of white flecks of fat that you see running through the meat. Marbling enhances the beef tenderness, juiciness, and flavor.  Because of the colder climate in Manitoba, which enhances appetite, and the superior growing genetics of our Limousin and Simmental cattle, ‘Circle Y’ steers are finished and ready for market by the time they are 12 -16 months of age. Feeding a high energy-finishing ration improves marbling and carcass quality dramatically. This young carcass produces a bright red color, firmness and fine muscle texture. Most US cattle are raised on pasture for 12 - 18 months, then placed in feedlots to acquire the desired finish (Nation Cattleman’s Beef Association), making the animal at least 2 years old when it is sent to market. As an animal matures, the characteristics of muscle change and the muscle color becomes darker and the texture becomes courser. (USDA Beef Grading)


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How is the safety of canadian beef monitored?


The Canadian Cattle Identification Program, initiated by producers, identifies cattle with numbered RFID (radio frequency identification) tags. This enables the industry to quickly trace and eliminate serious animal health problems. Canada is recognized world wide for its safe and wholesome beef products. Through stringent surveillance and traceability to the producer with RFID technology, Canada meets the criteria for minimal risk of disease.


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What is Natural Beef anyway?


USDA defines natural beef as a product that is minimally processed with no artificial ingredients or preservatives. Additionally we ensure all animals are never given meat by products, NO Hormones NO Antibiotics, NO Steroids.


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Is the ground beef lean?


Yes. Our ground beef is at least 85/15 and could be called ground steak. No fillers are ever added to our hamburger patties. We want to be sure our customers enjoy only the finest cuts of steak, and have the highest quality ground beef. There is no such thing as poorer cuts of steak from T-Bones, as you will find from other retailers, because if it is not amazingly tender, we put those cuts into our ground beef.


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Why do you age your beef?


We naturally dry age our meat for a minimum of 14 to 16 days to intensify the flavor and naturally increase the tenderness. Many beef suppliers cut and package the meat without aging the meat. At T-Bones, we consider aging the meat a vital step, to ensure your healthy meal is the best possible tasting meal, so we take this extra step to produce and process our beef the old-fashioned way.


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What kind of packaging should I expect?


All of our beef is processed at a USDA certified plant. Each piece is cut to our specifications, individually shrink wrapped in a cryovac package, then flash frozen at -24 degrees, sealing in moisture and preserving quality, bringing freshness right to your table. Simple to defrost, and fresh out of the bag, your meat will be fresh like the day it was processed.


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Can you tell me about freezers? How much meat will fit into my freezer? How long will it last?


One cubic foot of freezer space will hold approximately 30 – 35 pounds of meat. This is less than half of the freezer above the refrigerator. A small chest freezer will be required if you would like the convenience of having natural beef available year round. With the temperature of the freezer at –10, you can store and enjoy the freshness of our cryovaced packages for up to 1 year.


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Do you deliver?


Call for pick-up or delivery options in the St. Louis area. (636) 272-0422


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What about shipping?


We ship in specially designed insulated boxes and use dry ice. Shipping and handling charges will vary based upon the weight of the package, and zip code.


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What are your payment options?


We accept Visa, Mastercard, Discover, American Express. Local to St. Louis may also pay by check or cash.


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If I have specific questions, who can I contact?


Please feel free to contact us at info@tbonesstore.com or call us (636) 272-0422 (Mon - Sat 10 am to 6 pm CST) and we will be happy to answer any of your questions.

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