19 July 2010

Dear Readers: I need your help.

That's what I was planning to say if I'd written this in the morning, anyway. However, I've done some research over the course of the day and I have formulated tentative plans. That doesn't mean I shouldn't still check to see if anyone might have ideas/suggestions, though, right?

With Girls' Weekend fast approaching, there are a couple of things I need to purchase. Well, there are many things I need to purchase, but these two items are particularly vexing.

I'm on the hook to co-make breakfast on Sunday, and I'd promised bacon. However, there was no bacon in the freezer when I was home for the 'rents' anniversary party. In fact, my dad and uncle were only just talking about butchering hogs for the family. The bacon (and ham) takes even longer, because it needs to be smoked.

So, I need bacon. The problem is, I've never in my life gone out and bought a pack of bacon anywhere. And I'm not about to just grab a package of Hormel (though, the hog buyer from Hormel was a frequent visitor/caller to the house when I was growing up) at Rainbow. I want bacon from an honest-to-goodness butcher shop.

Quite frankly, I'm only passingly familiar with even the usual suspects. I very, very rarely buy my own meat (*insert innuendo here*). I order chickens through my parents through a farm in Southern Minnesota. Nearly all of my beef comes from the butcher shop in my hometown. I'll buy deli meats and chicken breasts, the occasional rotisserie chicken and maybe ground beef once a year. I have no idea who much a pound of bacon even costs. ("I mean, it's one banana Michael. What could it cost? $10?")

My research has me leaning toward Everett's Food & Meats on 38th and Cedar. Part of my criteria is that it be in Minneapolis, preferably closer to my neighborhood than not. Finer Meats on Nicollet & 38th might be my close second. It has fewer reviews, but it's closer and apparently has its own smokehouse. Third on the list at the moment is Ready Meats in Northeast. Many good reviews, plus they're close to where I'll be heading before we roll out of town.

Despite my own research and vague plans, I think I'd probably be well-served to ask anyway. Do you Minneapolitans have a favorite butcher shop? BaconQuest(tm) won't end after I buy my bacon Friday (thank you to The Boy I Currently Like for coming up with that campaign name).

But wait -- there's more! I want a tinted moisturizer. My current moisturizer doesn't have any sunscreen in it and I don't want to have to go to the trouble of putting on my mineral make-up to get sun protection. I was hoping to get by cheap (like, under $20), but that doesn't look like it's going to happen. Both Sephora ($18 marked down to $8) and Ulta's ($10) store brands had horrible reviews.

At the moment, I'm probably going to choose between Stila and TheBalm. The Stila reviews seem to be consistently better, but TheBalm is like, $11 cheaper.

Is there one I'm missing? My skin is greasy as hell and the more coverage the better, because my skin is horrible. And yes, it'll all come right off as soon as I get wet, but whatever. At the very least, I guess, I could go back to MAC. That stuff was so hard to get on evenly, though. It's apparently now a face and body foundation, that is water-resistant and water-based. With no SPF. Dammit all to hell.

So, help me dear readers. You're my only hope.


Cosmos said...

I've also heard good things Everett's, and also Clancey's in Linden Hills. I usually buy meat at Lund's. Lund's has a decent selection of boutique bacon.

If you ever get stuck buying pork retail, make sure you read the label, Rainbow injects all their pork with saline, up to 20% of the weight could be salt water.

I think you may be able to buy Fisher's pork (from Waseca) at Clancey's. I've never had their bacon, but it might be a good substitute for your family's bacon.

Bill From Gainesville said...

Wait... What?.... Is bacon from a Butcher Shop significantly better than what you get pre-packaged in the Grocery Store? ... I mean I get that Steak from a Butcher shop is better, but bacon? Is it more Baconey? is it Noticeable? have you ate the "Hormel" bacon and found it lacking? This may be the most significant thing I have read all day

Jess said...

I think there are other places you can get Fischer Farms pork in the metro, Cosmos. But maybe I've read about it being served at restaurants.

Either way, getting some of their bacon makes all kind of sense. I mean, they're probably with 10 or so miles from our farm. So it's practically like getting it from our farm.

Thanks for the reminder. I had them floating in the back of my mind, but it never quite surface.

Bill, yes, I believe getting my bacon from an actual butcher shop, where I can walk up to the counter and have them slice it just the way I want and give me the exact amount I want, and will tell me a little bit about it (what's there to know? IT'S BACON!) ... I think it's better.

That may be my small-town, farm girl bias, though.

Mimi said...

Oh, Bill yes it is not even the same thing. Hormel is a salt stick for a butcher shop it is BACON! It is so much meatier and tasty that one slice is satisfying. It is like 3x's the cost but worth every penny

I buy bacon at Clanceys, Kramarczuk Sausage Co in NE or in a pinch Everts.

Clanceys does not have Fisher Farms usually but what they have is just as good or better. I get almost all of my meat from there and Jess, it has to be the closest to you. The owner Kristen and her entire staff is great. They let me kid look in the freezer and see the whole sides of beef and pork. It has really helped her understand where her food comes from and be an adventurous eater. They even got me to try head cheese. Sorry for going on and on but I love that place.

You can also get nice meaty bacon at Kramarczuk that has no additives.

I rate Everts as the lowest of the bunch because it is the most like good, thick cut, grocery store bacon.

Von Hansons is another option.

Reuben said...

Who knew you were such a bacon snob???

I won't be much help. I'm only vaguely familiar with the idea that butchers exist. I don't think I've ever been to one.

Anyway, there's a place a couple blocks from my house called Sam's Meat Market, which sounds like a great place to buy bacon and/or get pregnant.

Reuben said...

Oh, after googling, it's called Sam's Market & Meat, which isn't nearly as funny.

Jess said...

I'm pretty sure I've proclaimed to be a bacon snob more than a few times. Or maybe that was a music snob. I'm a snob, okay!

Dammit, I was going to try Clancy's eventually, but I've heard it's pretty expensive, so I thought maybe I should work my way up, so the sticker shock doesn't kill me. But your enthusiasm might just have swayed me, Mimi.

Though no one is getting me to try head cheese. EVER.

I'm at once disappointed and relieved that it's Sam's Market and Meat, not Sam's Meat Market. I just want bacon, please. No babies. The butcher shop/grocery store in my hometown is a Meat Market.

Bill From Gainesville said...

Indeed, a life altering post. --- I now am on a mission to try some Fancy ass butcher handled bacon. - It will be like this analogy: Instead of picking up street Hookers with a crack addiction, it will be like getting one of those fancy 5k a night call girls -- I will be the Elliot Spitzer of Bacon use.

M said...

I in general hardly ever wear makeup, but I do have the Stila tinted moisturizer and I really like it. Its very light, not greasy, and gives you sort of an evenness. It doesn't really do much for coverage if you're looking for that. I'd recommend it though.

Jess said...

Wow. In trying to get people to help me, I've actually helped someone else. That's what blogging is all about.

I think.

Thanks, M. It's good to hear from someone one way or another. I'm not too concerned about coverage for this weekend (or putting it on to run errands or go to the gym). I'm mostly worried about eliminating a step, thus creating a lower-maintenance me. If only for a little while.

Diana said...

Ready Meats all the way. Added bonus: I'll be going there tomorrow or Friday to get the meat for Saturday dinner, so I can pick up whatever you want.

Jess said...

Well, shit. If you're offering ... This will likely save me from falling victim to the siren song of various brats, jerkies and meat sticks that might be available.

E-mail on the way!