Group claims breakthrough with discovery of new steak cut

Originally Posted: May 8, 2012, Drovers Cattle Network
By Kylee Willard, FAPC Communications Services Graduate Assistant

On April 17, 2012, the Vegas Strip Steak was unveiled exclusively as the “newest” beef steak at the Protein Innovation Summit in Chicago, Ill.

“The Vegas Strip Steak is the latest and perhaps last steak to be found from the beef carcass,” said Jacob Nelson, Robert M. Kerr Food & Agricultural Products Center value-added meat processing specialist.

Nelson along with Tony Mata, Mata & Associates, and Rick Gresh, chef at David Burke’s Primehouse at The James Hotel in Chicago, Ill., arranged an invitation only dinner for the first sampling of the steak at the Trump International Hotel & Tower.

“The Vegas Strip Steak was well received by the audience,” Mata said. “They tasted it, loved it and applauded.”

With more than 30 years of beef carcass research and development, Mata, the self-proclaimed Meat Geek, approached Nelson and Oklahoma State University’s FAPC with the possibility of a new beef carcass cut.

“Initially, the cut was labeled as undervalued,” Mata said. “Whenever we can take a muscle and turn it into a steak rather than grinding it or selling it as a roast, we are adding value to the carcass.”

In the research and development phase, the Vegas Strip Steak was compared against the New York Strip, Petite Filet and Flat Iron Steak.

“This muscle produces a steak that is on par with or better than today’s most popular steaks,” Mata said.

Vegas Strip Steak attributes of tenderness, flavor and appearance appeal to consumers.

“The tenderness of the Vegas Strip Steak is comparable to the New York Strip Steak,” Mata said. “It does not require aging or marinating to achieve tenderness and its visual appeal enhances the steak eater’s overall enjoyment.”

The Mata-Nelson duo worked to perfect and patent the fabrication of the cut.

“This steak can be fabricated from 4 ounces to 12 ounces,” Nelson said. “Versatility of this steak allows it to be utilized across a wide range of food service sectors.”

To bring the find to fruition past harvesting, Mata met with Chef Gresh to verify culinary performance of the Vegas Strip Steak.

“I am excited about the opportunities this new steak brings to menus,” Gresh said.

With a patent pending, the cut has yet to be identified to the general public. However, two suppliers are fabricating the cut and interested parties can be licensed to use the cut.

“Given the history of the beef industry, the discovery of a new beef steak that has never before been fabricated and marketed could appear to be an impossibility,” Nelson said. “But the FAPC, together with Dr. Mata and Chef Gresh, have made this impossibility a reality.”

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