July 4, 2012
Prince Edward Island – home to the Confederation Bridge, Anne of Green Gables and the best Lobsters in the world.
In the spirit of keeping it Canadian, PEI is a major supplier to the Glowbal Group restaurants. Perhaps not as well known as Anne or the Lobsters, PEI produces some of the highest grade beef in the world known as ‘Blue Ribbon.’
Recently, our very own Corporate Chef Ryan Gauthier (oversee-er of all Glowbal Group restaurants) had the opportunity to head back East to check out the fields that our beef comes from and to meet the families that run these farms. Here is what he had to say:
The difference between Canada’s West and East Coast is something I was not prepared for. Driving across the 13km Confederation Bridge from New Brunswick to PEI, I was dumbfounded by the truly magical scenery.
One of the first things I noticed, was that people here love their lawns. I guess I would too if my grass was that green and my yard looked like something straight out of Anne of Green Gables. Locals here (known as ‘the islanders’) say it is the iron in the soil that makes the grass and the agriculture so amazing. Whatever it is (and the reason why we came here), this precious land known as Prince Edward Island produces some of the highest quality, well flavored beef in the country.
Now, no offense to McCain and their hash browns, or the buttery flavoured Atlantic Lobsters, or to the waters that produce the highest quality of Bluefin Tuna in North America…but we had come to find out and experience the beef.
PEI beef is the top percentage of Canada’s highest grade of beef. It is (of course) potato fed, antibiotic free, absolutely no animal by-products and it is hormone free.
We visited the Atlantic Beef Products plant – whose beef is produced solely by family run and operated farms. It is headed up by a very likeable and sturdy guy named Mike. We were told that the beef is an older raised cattle, between 24-28 months of age, which allows for slow and easy growing. The flavor that comes through this beef is unique and tasty which has everything to do with the feed and how they are raised – potatoes, long grass and lush seaside fields.
We had heard that these PEI cows lived a “royal” life but getting to see it firsthand was something else. Seriously, you walk into the barn or the field and these animals genuinely look and act as if they live in a cow spa. You don’t hear the constant “Moooo’s” or see any restlessness. Obviously, it’s a dedication from the proud and knowledgeable farmers of these sought after cows.
One of the highlights of the trip for me was to meet and see in action a farmer named Tim, a.k.a the ‘Cow Whisperer.’ Tim was able to walk into his field full of scattered cattle and with only 1 or 2 voice signals, he had all of the cattle lined up and walking towards him. Amazing. Tim took us by his side to educate us on his farming skills.
The amazing flavor of PEI beef starts with these amazing people; the care, the belief and the dedication it takes to have a working farm. They really believe and take pride in their product.
Glowbal Group is proud to serve PEI Blue Ribbon Beef in Black+Blue, COAST, glowbal grill and Italian Kitchen. If you would like to bring PEI beef home with you, it can now be found in these specialty retailers:
Fresh Street Market - West Vancouver
Save on Foods – North Vancouver, Marine Drive
Famous Foods – Kingsway
Market Meats – Kitsilano
Nesters – Whistler
Butcher Dave’s – Sechelt
Claytons Market – Sechelt
Windsor Meats – Edgemont Village
Windsor Packing – Main Street
For great grilling, watch our Chef Tips below!