Got deer processed, but I think something went wrong, need advice

work765

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Took my buck a couple weeks back to a pretty well respected restaurant/market that process game animals but I have some questions about what I got.

I had them turn the majority of it into sausages for ease of cooking and being able to share with friends and family.

The first package of Bratwurst I cook up of four links all had this weird crunchy stuff in it kind of like sand. Almost every few bites I hit the crunchy stuff. And it's small crunchy and hard. Not soft like cartilage would be.

Me and my son eat all the links and I'm pretty upset about it but hope that maybe I got a bad batch. So I send a text to my buddy who I gave some bratwurst to and he shared that he had the same experience with his.
I then cook up a different flavor of sausage, and find the small crunchy things in that flavor as well.

I skinned and quartered the buck in the field and it had little bits of rocks on it for sure when I brought it into the butcher. BUT I would have never had imaged that they would not wash the meat down before grinding or making steaks.

So I'm confused. Is it rocks or some weird bone?

And what right do I have as a customer after spending $150.00 and the majority of the meat might have rocks in it??

This place is not a small mom and pop shop. They do big business and it's a very reputable place.





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work765

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It's definitely rock! Just had some and was able to fish a small piece out of my food.


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KTKT70

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Wow. That super sucks. How do you not notice something like that. They had to have seen dirt on the meat while cutting it down. I would start with a friendly call to the owner or manager. Depends on how that first talk ends up on what would happen next.
 

TheGDog

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Think about it. If that is grit... you're pretty much screwed as far as that deer meat is concerned.

At best the shop will play nice and either give you back money (doubtful) or offer to give you some of their product (meat) to make up for this loss.

I'd maybe hint at the fact that you're coming to them, in good faith to make it right... rather then you blasting them on Yelp or something. You'll have to work on the wording of it so it doesn't sound like a threat or passive-aggressive... more like a "gosh I just don't know what to do here" kinda thing. If you back'em into a corner so to speak, it'll never end well or right. Also... I'd maybe touch upon the fact that you're glad you found this issue quickly before any of your friends and families children perhaps hurt their teeth or hurt their digestive system because of it.

Definitely make it a point to touch upon the health of the kids that were subjected to eating this. That'll set it up well for negotiating later. Internally their eyes should widen at the thought of bad publicity related to their product and children. Again... do it in a round about way where they don't out-right perceive it as you making threats against them... but.. it shows subtley that you ain't no punk, and that if they don't step-up to the plate you're gonna make a helluva bad noise they're not gonna like for their reputation.

They had to have noticed or heard something when they were pushing it thru the damn grinder. grit would no doubt make a gnarly sound in a grinder wouldn't it? I'll betcha it's some lazy employee or noob employee that didn't remove the membrane and silver-skin.

Also.. if there is this grit all up in that mess... begs the question what the hell us might be all up in that mess too, no?

Now... for the Italian Sausages my local shop made for me... some of the spices they threw into mine are indeed hard near-unchewable bits. But you can see that it is clearly not bone or grit but a hard plant-matter type of deal. Probably a peppercorn, the Italian ones have a bit of spicy to them.

For next time remember to only do sausages with the less-desirable parts of the meat. Save the nice thick pieces... backstrap... rumps... and shoulders... don't deny yourself the treat of enjoying them as lightly broiled steaks with a grapeseed oil+herb/spices brush on!
 

dthome

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It seems like they missed trimming some dirt that may have been on your deer, which then got into your sausage. It happens, but shouldn't. I'd talk to them about it.

For what it's worth, I think venison tastes far better if you cut it up at home, and bag up the pieces for sausage yourself. Then take the bagged meat to your butcher for sausage. It comes out much better because it isn't being processed on the same bench as dozens of other rank carcasses that day, and you can be sure it's clean. For possible future consideration...
 

TheGDog

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Plus... if you butcher it yourself to remove the membrane and silver-skin... you can weigh it BEFORE you give it to them so you can make sure they are giving you back that weight plus the 20% or so more in fats that they add. You can compare before vs after... just to keep'em on the up and up.
 

work765

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It seems like they missed trimming some dirt that may have been on your deer, which then got into your sausage. It happens, but shouldn't. I'd talk to them about it.

For what it's worth, I think venison tastes far better if you cut it up at home, and bag up the pieces for sausage yourself. Then take the bagged meat to your butcher for sausage. It comes out much better because it isn't being processed on the same bench as dozens of other rank carcasses that day, and you can be sure it's clean. For possible future consideration...

I'm not trying to be totally unrealistic here. It's a game animal taken in the wild. Cut up in the dirt.
So some little crunchy rocks maybe every 15th sausage or so. Would be fine.

But if you bite into a small rock every third bite on four links out of four cooked. It seems pretty unacceptable. This wasn't done in some guys back yard for free. It's a big place that makes big money daily carving up meat, selling BBQ tri tip, catering parties. They know how to handle food and at a high level.

I'm just bummed this happened. And yes next time I'll take extra care to wash it all my self before delivering. Or making sure I relay this experience, so it doesn't happen again.

But I will definitely be calling the manager tomorrow, and mentioning my son and family eating it. And I will happily bring the sausages back in exchange for non-rocky food.

Thanks guys for the suggestions and advise!

I'll write back with the results


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DAQ80

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I've heard of butchers processing multiple deer/pigs/whatever together. Especially for things like sausage. So the hunter may be getting his animal mixed with other animals, or not even getting his at all.
Obviously not everyone has the time or patience to process their own meat, but avoiding situations like this is exactly why I butcher my own. It's all part of the hunting experience for me.


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6x7

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From what I have seen from big commercial shops is if you have grind made up 80%.of the meat will not be yours so the rocks could have came from another deer
 

Common Sense

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I usually just jerk out everything but the backstraps.
 

JohnCo

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Usually sand/dirt doesn't wash off. It gets stuck in the meat and has to be cut out which really cuts down on the amount of meat you get back. It's a real bummer they left it in your meat though. I'd call them and tell them
 

baco

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Start carrying a small space blanket/tarp with you it will help keep the meat clean. In the future if your going to take it to a processor may want to clean it up before hand. You will be surprised how much meat is lost by not keeping it clean in the field
 

OPAH

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Baco +1, I aways carry a silver e-blanket for that purpose, but have never had anything processed for me. sounds like a picnic at the beach, sand gets into everything, never was partial to a crunchy SANDwich
 

wedgy

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That Schreiner's deli/butcher gave my buddies deer away, probably to one of the employees. When he went to pick it up they showed him a receipt and said he had already picked it up. He was a long time customer an simply said I'm never coming here again. I was furious as I had spotted the deer and helped him pack it out. Be warned about that place.
 

OPAH

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I heard that they had to change out everything to process wild meat and then had to sterilize and and get a inspection before they could start back to regular domestic meats.

That is why it is next to impossible to find a butcher that will process Game. But then again So.California?
 
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JustGuy

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That is why it is next to impossible to find a butcher that will process Game. But then again So.California?
sorry but not true. It is much easier than you think.
There is a good saying: If you want it to be done right, do it yourself.
I was born and raised in era when you had to be able to do everything yourself, let alone so simple things as sausages.

If you are not able to make sausages, next thing is to hire a "professional" to make your children. And then ask why they look like a "professional"
Actually it has stared in certain way already.
 

OPAH

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I have always Butchered and cured my own and never had gritty meat.
 

TheGDog

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Baco +1, I aways carry a silver e-blanket for that purpose, but have never had anything processed for me. sounds like a picnic at the beach, sand gets into everything, never was partial to a crunchy SANDwich
PS...check the thickness of silver blanket you are about to purchase!

I again purchased another emergency blanket from the same manufacturer as before. The blanket I put under my deer in 2015 was awesome... worked great!

The one for 2016, what a piece of junk!

Since I had to move my deer a number of times to keep him in the fast-moving shade on that hot day... the much different and ridiculously thin blanket this year wanted to shred apart every time I had to move him... so I instead I had to whip-out the emergency rain poncho, which was significantly more durable that that other POS.
 

crazy

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Why not take one of those wonderful crunchy sausages down there since they are a restaurant also and have them cook it up and explain exactly what is in the mystery meat?
 


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