Mark Schatzker – April 2012

Steak - Grassfed Beef or Conventional, You Decide In This Interview with Author Mark Schatzker

Several years ago, after cutting into one bland steak too many, the award-winning travel writer Mark Schatzker asked himself: Why do some steaks taste better than others? That apparently simple question resulted in his first book, "Steak: One Man's Search for the World's Tastiest Piece of Beef." Schatzker visited four continents and seven countries -- including Scotland, Japan, and Argentina -- in an attempt to understand the much loved but terribly misunderstood meat. Among his numerous revelations -- our love of fat may be responsible for our large brains; the primitive cattle painted on cave walls in Europe appear to be superbly well finished; thin steaks are underrated -- perhaps the most extraordinary is that everything Americans think they know about steak is wrong. Great steak is not about corn, and it's not about marbling. And it sure ain't simple. The best steak Schatzker ever ate was grass fed. And yet, so was the worst. But after logging more than fifty thousand miles and eating several hundred pounds of steak, this all too skinny Canadian says he has some answers.

Schatzker is a food, travel and humor writer and a frequent contributor to Condé Nast Traveler. His writing has appeared in New York, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal and has been excerpted in Best American Travel Writing. In 2007 he traveled around the world in 80 days -- without flying -- to celebrate Condé Nast Traveler's 20th anniversary. He lives in Toronto with his wife and three children, where he is a columnist for The Globe and Mail newspaper.

Here is what some folks have to say about the book Steak:

A deep dive into a delicious subject
By Tomas
This review is from: Steak: One Man's Search for the World's Tastiest Piece of Beef (Hardcover) I wasn't sure what to expect when I started reading Steak. What I found was an excellent blend of travelogue, food writing, personal journal, and scientific discourse. The book is enjoyable from beginning to end. There is an honesty to the writing, suggesting a deep fascination and passion for the subject matter - steak. And that leads the author to discuss more than just opinions, more than just subjective descriptions of good food that may or may not be accessible to the average person. Schatzker travels all over the world to attempt to uncover why people love steak, what makes steak taste good, and what is wrong with mass produced commoditized beef. He writes about the food and flavor science in an ease that is reminiscent of Malcolm Gladwell or Atul Gawande. The complexity of the subject matter is explained in a story like fashion and that makes it highly digestible (pardon the pun) and fascinating. For a book that is educational, fun and even at times touching, I highly recommend this book.

Mark Schatzker on Natural Flavors
Most Complete Book Ever
By Paul

This review is from: Steak: One Man's Search for the World's Tastiest Piece of Beef (Hardcover)

Most complete book ever written on the hows and whys of producing the best flavored beef. Also a very enjoyable read for anyone interested in the culture of eating.

Lots of fun, lots of information -- a great read!
By Edward

This review is from: Steak: One Man's Search for the World's Tastiest Piece of Beef (Hardcover)

I enjoy "single subject" books like Rice, Sugar, Salt, The Founding Fish, Caviar and so forth. And I have been a perfect-steak-searcher for years. Some background: when I was a kid, my father, whose father was a butcher,would go in with a friend and buy a "side" of beef. He'd have it delivered to the local butcher where it would hang to become "dry aged." On Saturdays we'd go to the butcher shop and watch the butcher scrape off the mold and trim off the dried-out edges and deftly cut off two strip steaks 2 1/4 inches thick. The meat was crimson and "marbled" with intricate traceries of fat. Dad would cook the steak in an iron skillet (as the French do). Always rare. When done he'd put it on a warm plate and then pour red wine in the pan, add a pat of butter, swirl it around over high heat to make a sauce which he'd poured over the steak on the serving plate. That ritual turned me into a steak aficionado.

Schatzker's book is a steak lover's feast. He explores the merits of grass or grain fed beef and much more while taking you on a carnivorous journey around the world, a journey that will introduce you to the most subtle and delightful differences between extraordinary steak and ordinary meat.

An excellent and entertaining read
By C. J.

This review is from: Steak: One Man's Search for the World's Tastiest Piece of Beef (Hardcover) This is a book that all serious foodies (like myself) will enjoy. Even the most dedicated vegan should find the information about the agricultural and industrial aspects of putting a steak on the plate to be fascinating. Mr Schatzker has a very readable style of writing and I raced through this book in two afternoons. Very enjoyable.

Get your copy of this award winning authors entertaining and informative book, find it on Amazon from this link: "Steak: One Man's Search for the World's Tastiest Piece of Beef."

Mark has been gracious enough to share his perspective with us as a beef eater and lover of grassfed beef. As a producer of animals on grass, you might ask yourself what you can learn from a man that has traveled the world looking for the best beef he could find. Mark has learned through interviewing producers all over the world what he believes to be the answer or driving force behind the best tasting beef. In this interview, Mark will share the answer to that question of what makes the best tasting beef with you. He will also help you understand how to better sell your product to the consuming public. This interview and question and answer are now available for individual purchase. Simply click the buy button below and get immediate access directly below this button.


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2 thoughts on “Mark Schatzker – April 2012

  1. michaelparish

    My question for the Q-A session would be ” what has Mark seen in his travels that differs from the producers of G/F beef and those that produce really good, quality, an eating experience, G/F beef ? I guess I’ll buy the book and see if there is a pearl or two of wisdom in the readings. I do appreciate the network and I feel there is great potential for the future. Sometimes I feel like there needs to be a little more meat in the interviews. Thank you and I hope this can be helpful in some way. MIKE PARISH

    1. jtjones Post author

      Hi Mike,

      Thank you for your question and comments. Interviewing is an interesting task and one that I certainly don’t claim to be an expert in. One of the primary reasons for the Question and Answer session is exactly what you have expressed here; I don’t and won’t think of all the questions to ask or quite frankly, I may think of it and get side tracked and forget to come back to it. By having all of the members submit their questions after the initial interview, my hope and plan is that any question that I didn’t think of or get around to asking will be addressed. In order to insure that the questions get addressed, I need you as a member to do exactly what you have done here, ask the question so that I can then get you an answer from the trainer. Thanks again for your question and understand from your statement that you, as a member, are part of the process and submitting your questions is vital to getting the answers we all need from the various trainers. 🙂

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