Frozen vs Fresh

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by swood97, Dec 11, 2014.

  1. swood97

    swood97 Newbie

    Ok guys i have a question concerning fresh and frozen ribs. I plan on opening a bbq restaurant soon, and looking for meat purveyors. I live in "San Diego, Ca and was told by New Port meat, (which is own by Sysco) that most of the pork that comes into CA is frozen. I have done some research concerning this, and most of the pig farms here, are charging  between $10-$15 a pound for fresh spare ribs. New Port carries two: Spare Ribs 2.5# - 3.49 , and Salmon Creek Farms Spare Ribs 1.5# Rack - 4.75 which comes frozen. So my questions, is there a huge difference smoking frozen and fresh spare ribs. Will this hurt my restaurant by selling frozen ribs.


  2. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I do frozen all the time.

    I dont see any difference.
  3. swood97

    swood97 Newbie

    Ok thanks. I'm leaning towards the frozen, because i cant see spending $10-$15lb for fresh spare ribs here in san diego.
  4. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Yep , frozen does pretty good...

  5. red dog

    red dog Smoking Fanatic

    10-15 a pound? They must be feeding them gold dust. When talking about restaurant in California so much depends on where you are and who your customers will be. You could probably open a BBQ joint and advertise local farm raised organic heritage pork and sell ribs for 60.00 a rack in one area and do great. But that isn't the kind of place I would go to on a regular basis. Sorry. I shouldn't get started down that road. Truth is the average person who just likes to take his family for great BBQ won't know the difference and probably doesn't care. Then there are those, including some of my family members, who wouldn't eat it unless it was raised free range in green pastures and fed fresh organic garden veggies. Then humanely euthanized by ODing on locally made merlot. But then they won't eat our organic venison either. Probably because it died of lead poisoning.
    noboundaries likes this.
  6. noboundaries

    noboundaries Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    [​IMG]That creative bit of expression cracked me up!
  7. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I can buy fresh spares for 3 bucks a pound any day of the week. Less than 2 bucks on sale. Who the hell get's off charging 10-15 bucks a pound. Who the hell is willing to pay that?
  8. welshrarebit

    welshrarebit Master of the Pit

    I know kurobuta pork is ridiculously expensive! Luckily I can eat it at work...

  9. Have you even written a business plan?
  10. swood97

    swood97 Newbie

    Yes i have been writing the business place for the past 2 months now. I have even been in a mentor program with our small business administration. Here are some of the sites I looked at in san diego. and
  11. swood97

    swood97 Newbie

    I read how most good bbq restaurant in texas, Kansas,the Carolina, use fresh pork. Really dont know,if that is true or not. I guys meat prices would be a lot cheaper in those parts compared to California.
  12. welshrarebit

    welshrarebit Master of the Pit

    The cook pigs farm at least had the breeds listed!

    Kurobuta is the Japanese name for Berkshire pigs. They are the same thing. The English royal family gave some to the Japanese royal family. If you really want to offer heritage breeds I'd do it as a special only! Then you can offer the regular pork to everyone else... That way you appeal to everyone!!!

    The heritage breeds are three times more expensive but they aren't three times better tasting!
  13. welshrarebit

    welshrarebit Master of the Pit

    The sites you are referring to are raising heritage breeds, free range, organic (?), etc... This goes way beyond fresh versus frozen!!!

    You are comparing beef from a milk cow to a waygu steer!!! Find a local restaurant purveyor and and sit down with their salesman, he will become your best friend, and go over their products and services!!! Find out who all the other restaurants are using and go with them.
  14. swood97

    swood97 Newbie

    Ok thanks welshararebit. I have a list from new port meats, ill seat down with him next week.
  15. welshrarebit

    welshrarebit Master of the Pit

    I would highly recommend that you find the best BBQ place in San Diego and work under their pitmaster/chef!!! You will learn the hard way but it's not your money that is at stake!!!

    I was an award winning chef when I was 22 years old! I learned that I would rather be an indian at the best restaurant than a chief elsewhere!!!

    The restaurant that I work at now has a zagat rating of 28. 26 is extraordinary and 30 is perfection! I'm good with that!!!

    Please PM me if you have any Q's!!!
  16. jarjarchef

    jarjarchef Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I would agree with Welshrarebit on studing under someone for a bit. Even more so if you have never worked in the food service industry. There are tons of hyped up tv shows that make things look very diffrent than they really are. I have been in food service for about 25 years and still love it. Some days more than others, but it is a great career and would do it again.

    Unfortunately the location of California has a very challenging issue of the very extremes of customer perception and income, so a lot of the vendors are trying to get their cuts. So fresh takes the hit. Frozen is not a bad option, just dont refreeze it. If that happens then you run into a quality issue.

    I would continue to shop around for fresh. There are always more than one vendor that sells what you are looking for......

    If you need anything just ask.....
  17. I've not had a noticeable difference in fresh vs frozen meat when smoking, but there is a huge difference in the locally raised meat purchased at our local butcher shop. I think the primary reason beyond being fresh is that it hasn't been injected with those 'solutions' the big guys use to add weight - er I mean - enhance flavor. 

    Read the label - if your buying anything with added enhancements, your paying for it, 8% of 1 lb is 1.28 oz. That means that 1 lb (16 oz) of meat you are paying for is really only 14.72 oz of meat, the rest will run out of the package as soon as you open it. If your running a 10 lb pork butt or brisket, your paying for 3/4 lb of water and chemicals. I know not all areas have access to local meat, but buy it if you do; it price here is comparable, if not better, than the chain and big box grocery stores and it tastes so much better.

    Read what the solution is - you might be disgusted. I've seen some that add seaweed.
  18. ristau5741

    ristau5741 Meat Mopper

  19. red dog

    red dog Smoking Fanatic

    I guess this is the point I was really trying to make. If you are serious about doing this, and it sounds like you are, you should make a decision about who you want your clientele to be and cater to them. Not just in terms of the food you serve but also in location, atmosphere, decor, and service. Planning is everything along with hard work and it sounds like you are heading in the right direction. It's one helluva commitment. I started my first business in 1982 and got to take my first vacation in 1991.
  20. swood97

    swood97 Newbie

    Hey thanks for everyone, i really do appreciate it. I have look and a few farms here in San Diego, and its crazy how high their prices are for fresh. The new port meat rep I spoke with said that they have to get their meat from Idaho and Kansas. Because there isn't enough fresh pork to go around in CA. Ameskimo1 I'll ask the rep if the ribs comes with a solution, and if i can get a sample. I have been in the restaurant industry for about 12 years now. Started out as a line cook, to sous chef. I realized that if i was going to stress out, be mad all the time, drink etc let it be for something I own. I worked my ass off over the years for shitty pay and long hrs. Sad thing about, I still love it, it something about being in a kitchen. I tried to get a job at some of the bbq joints out here, but they would look at my resume and say"im not what they are looking for". Even if i said i would work for free part time, I wouldnt get a call back. I love bbq, been doing at home for years, its the only thing i can actually see myself doing.

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