On Independence Day, grills are dependent on a large, fresh supply of meat to fill the air with sensational aromas.
Before July 4th this year, Newsline 9's Josh Holland traveled to three standout local meat markets to find the best brats, richest rib-eyes, and some serious sirloins. From sausages built with unique seasonings in every casing to restaurant quality strip steaks and porterhouses.
At Ski's Meat Market in Steven's Point, all focus is on the rib-eye steak. Owner Dave Tuskowski calls it hands down the best piece of meat on earth.
Ski's also has between 20-30 styles of brat available in their meat case each day, including standards like the bacon brat or new flavors like 'drunken pickle'. Tuskowski calls steak and brats "the fun stuff' and uses lively music in his store to create an upbeat atmosphere.
In Marathon, an award-winning meat market takes each animal through the entire butchering process. As a full-service shop, Custom Meats slaughters, slices, and stuffs all of its brats and other meat products in one building. Custom Meats offers unique brats. The Packer brat contains 'gold' cheese and green in the form of broccoli. They also make a Thanksgiving brat with gravy, stuffing, and cranberries.
Along with pork, Custom Meats displays a wide variety of rib-eyes, porterhouses, and sirloins either frozen or available for custom cut made to order. They also boast a bundle of bacon wrapped products like chicken and pork loin. The 'Wisconsin' is a bacon wrapped chicken breast stuffed with mozzarella, cheddar, and Swiss cheeses.
Finally, at TJ's Butcher Block in Minocqua, the folks there are bringing restaurant quality to the consumer. Started in 1949 as a meat distributor, TJ's now offers all its professional cuts through retail. Their "special" sirloin always five dollars for filet around 6 ounces. TJ's also offers pork back ribs which owner Tim Krolczyk describes as extra meaty.
To find the best meat in Central Wisconsin, head to Ski's, TJ's, or Custom Meats.