Ready for a “prime” experience this summer? That’s exactly what you’ll get when you pair up your grill with a steak ordered online from Smith & Wollensky. Their steak orders are fulfilled right at the distribution source for the freshest possible meat, right from the dry aging room of Prime Food Distributor (PFD).
The Food Channel had the opportunity to check out the facility with one of our crews, and we have seen firsthand that the steaks are butchered and sent out fresh each day. Kim Lapine, vice president of marketing for Smith & Wollensky Restaurant Group, took a little time out while there to help pack one of the orders that came in that day—even to the point of adding a personal note of thanks.
By working directly with the distributor, Lapine says, “This allows the mail order and meat to be fulfilled under our specification and guidelines.”
She walked through the process in the PFD shipping room, where they filled an order for two packs of USDA Prime beef, specially selected dry-aged bone-in rib steaks, cut to Smith & Wollensky’s specifications. The meat is carefully boxed with food-safe frozen gel packs and clearly marked perishable, with guaranteed overnight delivery and their own “extra special care.”
Lapine pointed out that the steaks are, “Fresh never frozen, to the same specifications used in our restaurants—the same specifications that our chef has developed, with Prime, based on our quality standards.”
In addition to the steaks, products such as Smith & Wollensky brand steak sauce and steak knives—the same style as used in the restaurants—are also available online.
There is also the opportunity to join a loyalty program known as “Person or Persons Extraordinaire,” or PPX. With each visit or purchase you earn points toward exclusive rewards.
Smith & Wollensky uses only USDA Prime beef sourced from the Corn Belt for the Prime Steaks Online program, through its partnership with PFD. “We have a cooperative competition,” said Chef Matt. “We push each other to excellence.” The chef also visits PFD frequently, working with the company’s principals and employees to choose the best for his customers.
“We have specific feed lots and growers that we’ve partnered with,” said John Kosmidis, PFD Executive Vice President. Once it comes into the PFD plant, he said, “Everything is cut to order,” so a Smith & Wollensky steak would not even be cut until the order comes in.
“We don’t take it lightly that we are delivering to Smith & Wollensky Steakhouses across the country,” said Nicholas Castellana, Vice President of PFD. “Our client may be Smith & Wollensky, but we like to imagine who their guest is—who is having dinner there tonight—and make sure we are choosing the best steak for that person.”
Kosmidis adds, “We don’t deal with a commodity; this is our passion.” It’s a passion that comes through as you watch them choose the meat, portion it to specification, and ready it for their clients. He adds, “In the end, we still do it by hand. It’s just better.”
That’s the personal touch you get when you take advantage of the Smith & Wollensky experience, either in the restaurant or through online ordering.
On that note, the chef is offering a couple of special menu items this summer in the restaurants, and has made them available to our readers, along with some great tips and tricks of the masters. Check out Chef Matt’s Grilling Tips, along with the Cajun Rib Eye and Creamy Corn with Manchego recipes.
If you have a Smith & Wollensky Steakhouse in your area, this may be the time to get your summer off to the right start with a visit. And if not, you can still get the same fresh, never frozen, steaks through Smith & Wollensky Prime Steaks Online, fulfilled directly from the distributor and shipped directly to your door. They make it easy to choose your steaks for your next special summer occasion, BBQ, or even a memorable night at home.
Note: Smith & Wollensky has provided some level of compensation for this material.