Chef Will Gilson of The Lexington, Cambridge, MA and his dish, Australian Bavette Steak Frites with Peppercorn Sauce and Shoestring French Fries
What led you to choosing steak frites as your vehicle for Australian grassfed beef?
Steak frites was already our #1 seller, so featuring Australian grassfed bavette on that platform gave us a way to highlight something new in a pretty safe way.
What did you like about the bavette cut in particular?
We had used a grassfed ribeye on other dishes previously, but getting the bavette was great. Not only is it a classic bistro-style cut, but the grain of bavette is coarse. That means it picks up marinades extremely well, and cooks faster, getting to that perfect juicy doneness quickly. You want a full beefy flavor for this dish, and for the natural jus to mix with the compound butter and drag your fries through it…that’s steak frites!
How did guests respond to the run of Aussie grassfed on the menu?
Here in Cambridge, we have a very conscientious clientele; they care about sourcing and the integrity of what’s on the menu. They appreciate seeing grassfed, and seek it out. We’d love to keep it on the menu.
What advice do you have for chefs thinking about using grassfed beef?
Grassfed beef in general offers a different flavor than conventional, it’s bolder and has more minerality. If you’re not sure if your diners will go for it, the bavette cut makes a good introduction because of its fat content.
What about flavor pairings - what works best for you with grassfed meats?
For marinades and flavor pairing, I find using lots of green herbs is great with grassfed beef — think parsley, tarragon, chives, add some shallots…almost anything bright and green is going to do well.
Well done Chef! We can’t wait to pop in next time we’re in the Boston area to see what’s cooking and have a taste for ourselves.