It’s no coincidence that the phrase “keepin’ it real” gained popularity alongside a strong interest in knowing where your food comes from. What better place to keep it real than at a butcher shop? At Primal Cuts in Bend, proprietor Bryan Tremayne is on a relentless quest to offer locally raised meats of the highest quality.
When Tremayne said, “We want to bring back the true farm-to-plate experience for all our customers to enjoy,” he didn’t mean it in the trendy, Portlandia-esque, what-was-my-chicken’s-name sort of way. He is talking about eating well—really well. That means incredible flavor and healthy food.
Bringing that to the plates of Central Oregonians means Tremayne truly knows local farmers and their practices—sourcing meat from places such as DD Ranch in Terrebonne, which raises free-range, grass-fed beef, and pork raised on wheat and alfalfa grown on the ranch. Grass-fed meat is more tender, leaner and richer in omega-3 fatty acids compared to grain fed animals.
Instead of being factory processed at an earlier date and trucked hundreds of miles, the meat is cut in front of you, wrapped in brown butcher paper and handed to you by someone who knows exactly what it is and how best to prepare it.
It will cost about the same or a fraction more than the grocer’s meat section, but with exponentially higher value. Tremayne gets excited about osso buco in the fall. It’s traditionally made with braised veal shanks, but beef, pork, lamb and goat are delicious options. Fall is the time to turn on the oven for a few hours and coax out the rich taste.“A good braised pork osso buco is one of my favorite meals,” he said. “You still get a nice taste of marrow with the flavor of pork.”
Like most venues in Bend, Primal Cuts is a source of local beers, too. Growler Phil’s tap room has two dozen craft brews on tap. Pour your favorite beer and talk to your butcher about preparing your favorite cut for dinner. It doesn’t get any more real than that.