And the Winner of our Memorial Day Meat Contest is….

Prepare your buns, Max! Photo by Rachel Wharton.
Prepare the buns, Max! Photo by Rachel Wharton.

A few weeks back we asked you guys to tell us about the lengths you’ve gone to to grill in this not-quite-so-grill friendly town. You know, your law-breaking fireplay, your crafty barbecue balcony creations, your major subway schleps.

The answers — you can read them all right here in the comments section, and you should — were great, but we give our prize to Max, because, well, we’re suckers for Blackout stories, especially those that involve venison and the sunrise. His tale, as he tells it: 

“NYC blackout of 2003…one of the greatest BBQ nights I’ve ever encountered. Flashlights were used to navigate our way through the streets of the east village to a buddy’s garden apartment. For this rare occasion, it was agreed that we’d grill and grill and grill until the sun came up. While we were without an actual range for grilling, my buddy, who works at Eastern Mountain Sports, sets up 4 camping stoves. We fire them up, throw a grate over them, and throw some of the greatest, freshest venison loin we’ve ever had (killed and prepared by our Vermonter buddy just a couple days earlier) onto that makeshift grill. Seasoned in salt, pepper, garlic, and wrapped in bacon – it was absolutely delightful….a night that I’ll never forget.”

Though we also wavered over Adrian’s F-train ride from Forest Hills with 60 wings, Jamie’s appropriation of her alleyway into barbecue central (photos here) and Meredith’s Arthur Avenue excursions. And all those awesome Prospect Park reports, natch.

Those earned our love but Max scored a $225 Private Reserve Grilling Collection from Dean & Deluca and Brandt Beef, Dean & Deluca’s beef purveyors, who raise their animals without hormones and antibiotics and even grow their own alfalfa. The PRGC is 2 loin strip steaks, 2 cowboy-cut rib chops, 2 shoulder-cut flat iron steaks and 2 baseball top sirloins and 4 burgers, which are ground fresh daily by Dean & Deluca from four whole muscle cuts.

Those are all going to be cut to order in the next few days for Max by Brandt Beef’s in-house chef Tom McAliney, who helped us make this handy slideshow on cooking better burgers. He can also show you how to cook a steak during a steak-grilling demo this Thursday from 3 to 6 p.m. at Dean & DeLuca’s 1150 Madison Avenue branch.

We’d suggest you stop by even if you already know how, as we’re pretty sure you’re going to get to sample them too. And while you’re at it, it wouldn’t hurt to become fast friends with Max, too.

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