Welcome to the latest edition of ‘In The Paddock’. If this is your first time reading our blog or you’ve read a few chapters then we’d just like to say ‘thanks’. We really appreciate it and hope you’ll continue to stay up-to-date with the inner workings of The Paddock Restaurant and Bar.
Here at The Paddock we have a focus on quality produce with an Australian province. I source all of our liquor from boutique breweries, distilleries and vineyards – and chefs Liam and Sarah use ingredients that are grown and harvested on sustainable Aussie farms. Our famous Cape Grim beef is the best in the country! We’re always asking our guests to share their wise words with us. One sentiment that we’re told frequently is that we have the best steak in Cairns. A sentiment our team has worked hard to achieve and maintain. However, we also have a stigma for being a restaurant with expensive steak. I’m going to explain some of the factors that differentiate our unique grass-fed natural beef from common grain-fed beef.
The common grain fed beef you may have experienced at other restaurants for a lower price can usually have a higher cost to your health. Farms that feed their cows with grains have a diet that is high in Omega-6 and only small a portion of alpha-linoleic (Omega-3). Consuming too much omega-6 and not enough omega-3 can result in an imbalance that results in serious health complications for cattle and humans. Artificial stimulant and hormone injections are used to make the cattle bigger faster (than they naturally would). Cattle are kept in enclosed feedlots and often live in unsanitary and substandard conditions. They don’t get nearly enough exercise, which results in poor quality intramuscular fat content, which changes the way the beef should taste. The likelihood of the cattle becoming ill and/or suffering from bovine diseases is high. Once the common grain-fed beef is served to you in a restaurant it lacks natural flavour. Most importantly, is doesn’t contain nearly enough of the vital omega-3, vitamins and minerals that our bodies require to function properly.
The beef we serve at The Paddock Restaurant and Bar comes from Cape Grim in Tasmania - A region known Worldwide for its pristine air, earth and water. In facts, the air is so clean that scientists across the World measure air pollution against that of Tasmania. It also rains for an average of 187 days every year. These are perfect conditions to grow an abundance of green pastures. While blades of grass develop omega-3 is formed in the chloroplasts. Once the grass has fully matured a high percentage of the fat content in the leaves is made up of alpha-linoleic (Omega-3), then only a small portion of linoleic acid Omega-6s. The farmers then bring in Mother Nature’s natural lawn mower; a herd of cattle. They roam free and chow down all of the lush grass which keeps them lean, healthy and happy. The beef also has substantially higher percentages of magnesium, potassium, iron, calcium, vitamins and minerals than common grain-fed beef. There is a downside. It takes the cattle longer for their bodies to fully develop naturally. Due to feeding off grass and not being locked away in feedlots for most of their lives the farms need to be managed on higher cattle/acreage ratios. These factors increase the costs of production considerably; however sustainable and ethical farming is invaluable to the environment and your tastebuds.
The human body isn’t capable of producing alpha-linoleic (Omega-3) or linoleic acid (Omega-6) on its own. We need to obtain them through our diet. We also need to have a balance between the two in a ratio in favour of Omega-3. Omega-3 fatty acids have a multitude of benefits for us ranging from hormone production and inflammation regulation to protecting our cardiovascular system. They help our bodies grow and repair. Consuming a diet that has high levels of omega-6s and low levels of omega-3s can lead to a number of health complications. Obesity, stroke, type-2 diabetes and heart attack have been linked to diets that are high in omega-6s and lacking in omega-3s. The beef with the healthiest balance of omega fatty acids and higher percentages of vitamins and minerals is grass-fed natural beef.
To summarise; Grain-fed cattle are restricted in enclosed feedlots, fed an omega-6 rich diet while being injected with growth hormones and other chemicals to make them fat. This can lead to some adverse impacts on your health. Grass-fed cattle are able to roam free on green pastures with crisp, clean, fresh air and have a healthy balanced diet that allow them to develop naturally. The end result is a cut of natural beef that is juicier, tender, flavoursome and has a multitude of health benefits. So the next time you feel like taking your friends and family out for a steak we’re asking you to support sustainable and ethical Australian farms. Support a local business that’s looking out for your health. Support The Paddock Restaurant and Bar.