We chatted to Thomas as he prepared for a busy lunch setting… ‘In the 10 years before opening Les Arlots, I’ve served Certified Hereford Prime in the various restaurants I’ve cooked at. The taste and the smoothness of the grain were always so dependable. We knew we could trust it when we opened our own restaurant.’
‘When you cook it you see the real difference. Because the Hereford cattle are so well raised, their fibre is tight. This means when you put it on heat there is a nice crust, it’s not full of water. The colouring too is perfect. The other thing about this beef is that it has a hazelnut taste and a real fineness to the fat. It’s about the texture as well as the taste.’
‘I am often asked why do I not work with French meat. My answer is because, more than anything, I need consistency. I need trust. I need the meat to be regular all the time. Something I have with Jean Denaux and Irish Hereford prime.’
‘We serve the rib steak and the hanger steak, Certified Irish Hereford Prime is at the top of its game. It really is the Rolls-Royce of meat.’
Tom Barry’s family farm is Baytown Park, Dunboyne, Co Meath. He is the third generation on the farm taking over from his late father, Thomas Barry in 2008 and keeps Hereford cross suckler cows as well as pedigree Hereford cows. Herefords are such a docile breed and as a part time farmer, with teenagers helping around the farm, it’s important to have a breed that’s easy to look after and handle. Tom’s farm is in the Green, Low-Carbon, Agri-Environment Scheme (GLAS) for the past 5 years, where frequently taking soil samples and the completion of a nutrient management plan are required.