We are the NEW GENERATION of pre-cooked meat. Trust us. You haven’t had it this good.
Denver Meat Company is changing the face of the meat industry as we know it today. We produce the most delicious, highest-quality cooked-meat products for executive chefs, foodservice operators and consumers. You’ll find us in tablecloth restaurants, hotels, and other quality-minded, high-end food establishments.
Denver Meat Company was incorporated in June, 2001. Since its inception, DMC has been perfecting its ovens and cooking methodology and is now focused on sales and operations. President Jerry O’Connor has over 25 years’ experience creating and leading the healthy cooked-meat industry. Using his proprietary method of dry-roasted cooking, his cooked meat products were preferred in comparative taste tests – even over the products of major meat companies! His meats were then used exclusively in installations that had previously not accepted a cooked meat product.
We have the highest standard of quality and work with integrity in every aspect of our business, giving honor to God in all that we do.
The Meat. Having learned the value of quality meat from the ranch, I was pleased to join a large, successful meat company that produced high-quality products including beef, ham, bacon and sausage. It was there that I was introduced to the full spectrum of the meat packing industry.
As it had both a cattle and hog kill operation, I learned that raw beef and pork are commodities, and that USDA-grading, volume and weight are the most prevalent considerations for a packer to make money. In addition, the meat company I worked for had many value-added, identifiable products that provided a much higher margin. This made their product unique and it stood out from the others. I realized that once someone had a good experience with a value-added product, they would seek out this product over other brands.
The light went on – a value-added product has more value and desire than a commodity product, which anyone could produce.
In the 1980’s the industry decided to make beef as convenient as cooked ham. They copied some of the ham cooking methods and these methods are still largely used today: The biggest challenge was to tenderize the beef. So, like with ham, they injected water, tenderizers and chemicals into the meat for tenderization and flavor. Once the beef was injected with these additives, the beef weighed up to 25% more. Then, the meat was placed in a tumbler/massager, which has the same characteristics as a cement mixer, to further tenderize and saturate the beef with the water and flavoring. The next step was to cover the surface of the beef with a caramel rub to darken it, then place it in a plastic bag and seal it. The sealed bag was then place in a vat of hot water and cooked. An exhausting process just to cook beef! However, the packers then (and now) concentrate on volume and weight, so this process increases their profits.
After the beef has been pre-cooked in this fashion, it fills a need for the restaurant industry in sandwich shops and delicatessens. It allows them to serve beef sandwiches just as easily as ham and turkey. This type of pre-cooked meat is very popular because of the convenience of serving without having to cook. It is also used in certain restaurants but it is limited to cold cuts since it cannot be heated for a center-of- plate entrée.
Because this is the most prevalent method employed by meat packers, pre-cooked beef has now become a commodity.
The epiphany. I wondered: is there a way to could produce a finished cooked beef product that mimics the beef in the finest restaurant?
It occurred to me that many high-end food service establishments purchase and serve pre-prepared pastries, cakes, croissants, etc., that are ready to serve. By doing so, a chef reduces costs in personnel, eliminates preparation time and the risk of inconsistency in the food. Plus, the products are high- quality as if the chef prepared them that day in-house. I knew that I could provide the same benefits with meat with a convenient center-of-plate entrée.
The Research. Over the years, cooking and marketing studies were performed by Colorado State University, Texas A&M, Northern Colorado University and Metro State College. The purpose was to establish objective opinions of these unique cooked products. Some of their findings:
- In a sensory panel study conducted at Colorado State University by food scientist Professor Joseph Maga, Prof Maga went on record saying that when our cooked prime rib and roast beef were heated in a microwave, there was no “warmed over flavor” – they tasted as if they were just cooked!
- Dr. Rhonda Miller, meat scientist at Texas A&M conducted a sensory panel study of cooked leg of lamb and rack of lamb. These cooked products were heated in a microwave oven then compared to lamb freshly cooked. In two out of three tastings, the panel preferred our cooked lamb heated in a microwave over lamb freshly cooked by a chef!
So for the first time, a chef or restaurant manager can serve center-of-plate beef such as prime rib without having to cook it – saving costs in labor, shrinkage and trim. In addition, with the millions and millions of microwaves out there, all of which cannot cook meat, the consumer can now enjoy a steak, prime rib and a rack of lamb, etc. by simply heating them in the microwave for just minutes! Amazing!
The “what if” became a reality – the beginning of a dream!
Since that time, 5-star, resort and tablecloth restaurants have enjoyed Denver Meat Company’s delicious tender product; and thousands of Cabela’s’ catalog customers have enjoyed prime rib, smoked brisket and rack and leg of lamb for a Christmas dinner in the comfort of their home – all without cooking!
Besides prime rib, roast beef, smoked brisket (choice, no-roll or select) rack and leg of lamb, DMC has successfully cooked other meat products including turkey breast, bison strip loin and prime rib, grass-fed beef and Mexican prime rib.