At Cottonwood Ranch on the edge of the Shenandoah Valley, the Angus herd grazes through forest and pasture, and is given an extra snack of GMO-free brewer's mash from a nearby craft brewery. Brewer's mash -- made of hops and barley -- is a byproduct of the beer production process that would be wasted by the ton if it weren't put to use by ranchers and their cows. The mash adds a malty, molasses flavor to this craft beef, plus great marbling.
Long Story Farms is a pasture-based, grain-finished cattle ranch run by two childhood best friends whose focus is on happy, stress-free cows and delicious steak. The fields are set up so the cows can rotate to their next paddock by way of a simple stroll -- no herd dogs or horses needed. Early-cut small grains and grassy forages make this antibiotic-free, hormone-free beef a real treat.