Is the T-bone steak back in vogue?

It used to be a staple part of the weekly diet for most Britons, but these days how often do you see a T-bone steak on the dinner table or on a restaurant menu?

Whether it was the bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) - otherwise known as mad cow disease - outbreak of the 1990s or the recession that is to blame, one thing is for certain, the T-bone moved off the menu. But is it now in the process of making a dramatic return?

Beef T-bones were permanently discarded when the then Secretary of State for Agriculture Jack Cunningham banned the meat in 1997 through fears that eating beef on the bone risked developing the human form of (BSE).

But that assessment was later deemed “negligible” and after a year of banning beef on the bone - and a very trying time for the British beef industry - the decision was overturned.

This may well have led to a change in attitude as people simply got out of the habit of buying any kind of T-bone meat - but now, it seems, Britons are ready to get back into the delicacy.

One Shropshire butcher has revealed it sends £150 worth of T-bone steak to just one customer in London every few months.

G. N. Badley & Sons family butchers sends the meat to hundreds of people and restaurants across the UK every month.
It now supplies tens of restaurants in our county alone, compared to just a handful of restaurants just five years ago.

It includes customers such as The Arleston Inn, SoFood! Diner at Mapel House, Telford and Telford & Wrekin Council.

Bosses at the butchers in Gibbons Road, Trench, have seen a gradual increase in orders for the meat.

Managing director Simon Badley said: “It really is very much back in the forefront of people’s minds now.
“We are supplying to more and more restaurants and it seems to be growing in popularity again.
“Restaurants across Shropshire order around one hundred T-bone steaks every month in total and it is clear when you read things like restaurant reviews and menu relaunches, this is something people are thinking about again.”

In fact, T-bone is now winning awards again.
At last month’s Great Taste Awards, the most prestigious food accreditation system for independent producers, a Cotswold-reared lamb T-Bone steak (from Martin’s Meats) received the highest accolade.

So maybe it is time to finally discard all fears and branch out, once again, to embrace that T-bone and bring it back to the weekly dinner table.

And Mr Badley thinks he knows why it could be the time for change.
He added: “It could be due to the ever-increasing American influence in our society.
“British people have stuck to fillet or sirloin steak for so long but see the sizzlers in America and the range of meat on offer there, the obsession with the rump steak.

“As with our language and industries such as film and music, I believe this is another area of our culture that is having a USA influence.”

G. N. Badley & Sons offers 10, 12 and 14pz British T-bone steaks.

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Pete White Pete White

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