Golf and cattle? Yes, really. Watching cattle graze in the distance while playing a round of golf on a remote island doesn’t happen anywhere except Sattler Farms, a coastal strip where stark beaches fold into undulating farmland.
Tucked in Northeast Tasmania near the coastal town of Bridport, the Sattler family’s Barnbougle property produces soft and buttery grass-finished beef while also providing a pristine destination golf course (and yes, they serve their own beef at the course’s restaurants). The family’s 30 year history on this land makes the most of the vast coastal setting with its fertile river flats and “run country” pastures.
“The two businesses are surprisingly interrelated,” shares second-generation farmer Stephen Sattler. “A lot of the practices we do on the farm for maintaining the soil and grass growth are the same on the golf course. It’s a natural flow through the two businesses.”
The bordering Bass Strait brings reliable year-round rainfall, which means that pasture grasses like clover flourish in every season. Mild winters and medium summers make the perfect climate to raise happy animals.
Stephen shares, “It’s really quite a consistent area in regards to rainfall, which is very beneficial to our practices. It maintains our grass growth year-round so we never get too dry. In the winter months, our conditions are still mild enough for grass growth to continue!”
From testing the soil to maintain natural bushland, the Sattler family focuses on maintaining the entire ecosystem to balance the herds’ needs with that of the land and native wildlife. Rotational grazing and regenerative pastures prove that this hard work pays off.
With such incredibly landscapes, it’s no surprise that the Sattler family does the whole thing on location — from breeding to raising to grass-finishing. The herd enjoys 12,000 acres of run country before finishing on 2,500 acres of irrigated perennial pastures with high-quality grass and clover. Additional hay silage cut from these pastures supplements the native grasses during the cooler winter months.
Stephen and the rest of the family are firmly committed to caring for the land and animals. Healthy and happy animals results in better beef. That’s why Barnbougle is 100% GAP Certified to uphold the highest standard of animal husbandry. All the animals are naturally raised without growth hormones or substitute stimulates.
Grass-fed, grass-finished beef is delicious, make no mistake about it. Speaking of mistakes, many people who write-off grass-fed beef make the mistake of preparing it the same as the grain-finished beef that they're so used to. At Crowd Cow, we've found more often than not, that the difference between a great grass-fed steak and a sub-par one all comes down to knowing how to cook it correctly.
At Crowd Cow, we've had the good fortune to taste a lot of grass-fed, grass-finished beef -- from different cuts and different producers. We've found that grass fed beef usually takes 25-30% less time to cook. You might be used to cooking your rib steaks 4 minutes per side, but for grass-fed beef, you'll want to only give it 3 minutes. Better yet, try sous-viding your grass-fed steaks or preparing them with a reverse-sear.
Lastly, consider a marinade or rub. These can often overwhelm more-mellow grain-finished beef, but are perfect for rounding out the flavor of grass-fed beef, and marinades in particular are helpful in keeping the meat moist, preventing it from overcooking and drying out.