Grilling Beef

The esteemed 19th-century French chef Marie-Antoine Carême once wrote, “Beef is the soul of cooking.” Were Carême alive today and living in America, it’s quite likely he might amend that statement to, “Beef is the soul of ’cuing.” There may be no better symbol for our country’s primordial, almost patriotic, obsession with grilling than the hamburger or the steak. But while burgers and New York strips or rib eyes are quick and easy to throw onto the ’cue, isn’t the soul of grilling (or, rather, barbecuing) really about standing idly around the fire, beverage in hand, and shooting the breeze?

With this in mind, we asked Jason Owens, John Gorham and Ben Dyer, co-owners of Simpatica Catering, Simpatica Dining Hall and Viande Meats & Sausage, to develop a grilling menu that centered around a cut of beef that would require a slightly longer cooking time. Considering the quality and variety of meat they have access to through Viande, we knew they’d have no trouble—plus, that bold flame tattoo climbing up Gorham’s right arm seemed like a good indication that these guys would know what they were doing when it came to matching flesh with fire.