One of our chief complaints when buying meat from the supermarket is that it either the offering lacks good flavor or is often too tough. But then one day, we had a chat with one of our restaurant buddies, and he said something that stuck - he started getting quality, pasture-raised meat produce from Porter Road Butcher shop.

After placing a few orders from the company, my team thinks it’s time for a Porter Road review.

What Is Porter Road?

review of Porter Road

Porter Road is a butcher shop and online meat delivery service that offers pre-made box options around the United States. They provide non-GMO, grass-fed and pasture-raised meat, pork, chicken, and lamb.

It was founded by James Peisker and Chris Carter in 2010. The two founders owned a catering business in Tennessee but kept running out of the right stock as the demand started to increase. Their solution was to begin sourcing and shopping their meat from a Kentucky farm facility, and establish a nice butcher shop in Nashville.

The business eventually opened and already started out serving the local people, restaurants, and catering services. But, as the story got out about their high-quality marbling meat cuts, they set up a website and began selling online as a meat delivery service.

Pros
  • Good portions and ample cuts
  • Excellent overall quality
  • Environmentally friendly meat sourcing
  • Allows individual purchase, or you can subscribe
Cons
  • Limited options to choose from
  • No seafood category available

What Are The Menu Choices?

Upon looking at Porter Road's selection, you'll find it a bit more limited than some of the other virtual meat delivery service providers and butcher shops. The same goes for when you look at local community grocery stores. However, they still offer your favorite marbling portions and an ample choice of great cuts suitable for each cooking method or kitchen recipe, such as:

1. Beef

The company offers various cuts per pound of grain blend finished beef, something that we're a fan of. Also included are the ground beef bundle, marrow bone, flat iron steak, sirloins, beef brisket, chuck eye steak, blade steak, short ribs, filet mignon, and more - tender steaks galore for your grilled recipes.

2. Chicken

You can find both whole chickens, as well as bone-in and boneless chicken breast and fresh chicken broth for easy cooking.

3. Pork

Porter Road offers great types and cuts for every consumer. This includes pork butt, boneless pork chops, bone-in pork chop, country sausage, New York strip, hand-cut pork steaks, half pork butt, breakfast sausage, and more. For the best kind of pork for your backyard BBQ, check Kurobuta pork.

4. Lamb

If you're a lamb fan, you can also find a wide array of good lamb meat both online and at their Nashville meat shop. Some of the tender cuts you can buy include a pound or two of lamb shoulder, lamb chops, shank, steaks, and more.

Any Other Variety?

Even though they don't have a seafood category or some of the other specialty products like bison or venison, we can say that there sure is plenty of choices when shopping for your grilled beef, pork, and poultry recipes. Each cut is different, and you can find any produce to cook any way you like, especially if you want the flavor back to your pork chop recipe.

They have great cuts suitable for every type of cooking method imaginable. One of the main things we loved when we tried Porter Road was that we could have a different cut cooked each day. Good stuff that you or most chefs won't find in grocery stores.

How Is The Quality?

carve cow

The cut of meat consumers would order from the grocery store is usually high in fat quantities and low in nutrients.

A lot of it is packed with hormones and sourced from a purveyor or provider that most likely isn’t raising their animals with care.

That's one main difference between Porter Road and traditional meat delivery shops.

During our order review, we found that the menu quality was nothing less than excellent every time we ordered it straight to our door.

From local farms directly to your dinner table, their hand-cut flat iron steak, select ground beef, short ribs, ground lamb, pork butt, and other meaty delights always come back fresh, not frozen and goes straight to the oven. The taste and flavor of the selections were never inconsistent. Always flavorful, exactly how we like it.

Porter Road Meat Sourcing

Like many other online meat service providers, Porter Road's quality meat is at a much higher standard than what you would normally find in a grocery store or at meat shops.

According to their website, Porter Road sources all of its delicious meat from local farms near their processing plants in Kentucky and Tennessee.

The induction of antimicrobial-resistant bacteria and the disruption of normal human intestinal flora [from antibiotics in meat] are major concerns in terms of human health impact.

- Daejin Kang, Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries, South Korea

All of the local farms they work with practice environmentally friendly techniques. They do not rely on the use of hormones or antibiotics. Porter Road claims that all its select animals are pasture-raised, grass-fed, and free-range. They also avoid buying from people who operate mass factory farms or raise animals inhumanely.

Porter Road Pricing

Their pricing is a bit higher than your local grocery shop or in the grocery store meat section. Due to the way they source their top produce, you'll see the price per pound of many of its animal produce is a little pricey to match the weight per ounce, quality and environmentally-friendly animal raising practices.

Majority of their beef have a cost that ranges between $8 for the cheapest cut to over $100 for whole chunks. Free-range chicken prices come close to $15 to over $26 for large whole chickens. Pork amount range close to $9 to over $30 for some cuts.

Subscription Boxes

Porter Road offers individual purchasing of their items, or you can also subscribe to their services, based on your schedule. Their resource is new and allows you to customize your package completely to get added popular options each month. All of the delicious animal produce comes from the Porter Road shop, all sourced from their Kentucky and Tennessee facilities. You can also buy curated options like the bacon box that's perfect to mix in with some brussel sprouts. Other curated boxes include:

quality meat

Butchers Choice - includes delicious steak, ground beef, bacon, and various types of pork for any meal.

Best of Porter Road - this is a hand-selected great mix of their various types of juicy meat to feed several people. It's suitable for adding to the grill, cooking with a sous vide, or throwing on a cast-iron skillet with seasoning. Great to share with family and friends.

Grill Master - as the name implies, the grill master box option is full of top pork, lamb, or beef that are better suited for grilling and slathering some salt, beer, BBQ sauce, or hot sauce on. For the best grilling experience, consider using a smoker box or Smoke Hollow at home.

Delivery & Packaging

Like many other companies, Porter Road packages its deliveries in environmentally friendly biodegradable packaging. They use a cornstarch-based foam when packing, which, according to the site, can be washed down the sink or used to help light your grill.

But unlike other companies that freeze and mail using dry ice packs, this enterprise doesn't freeze most of their beef to ensure freshness and taste during shipment. Since it might turn bad after a few hours, you really need to be at home when your order arrives. Get it into the freezer as soon as you can.

Porter Road Shipping

Porter Road ships to the 48 contiguous states in the United States. This excludes Alaska, Hawaii, and other remote territories of the country. When you make a purchase, they offer both standard and express shipping and free shipping on all orders over $100. All pasture-raised beef is shipped from either the Porter Road shop in Tennessee or their working facility.

There are stringent laws covering where beef can be shipped by mail, so they have the same area as other subscription services. (2)

Porter Road Storage

The company recommends the best way to store all fresh produce. As soon as you get your package, get it into the refrigerator. Storage should be short-term to ensure the best flavor and taste. According to their site, a small piece of beef that is frozen runs the risk of becoming damaged due to ice formation (3). As ice forms, the beef hardens, and the crystals cut through the fiber of the meat itself.

It is recommended that you freeze or consume poultry within four days, pork within five days, and beef within ten days unless it is ground.

Customer Support

beef Porter Road

Porter Road is unique because it has a shop in Nashville, as well as a considerable online presence. With this in mind, they have two ways of providing great customer support staff - email and phone. This means that with just a click of a button, you can call whenever you need shopping assistance, whether it's helping with one of your orders or questions about the up and coming products.

You can also find lots of web reviews and tips from customers who have had really positive experiences with the service and specifically mention customer support as a huge plus.

Downsides of Porter Road

While there are numerous upsides to Porter Road and its delivery, there are two main drawbacks:

The first is that, while they have a large variety of cuts you can buy, there isn't as much to choose from as far as other types of meat go. You'll see that some other online companies offer new and really unique items, such as bison, elk, venison, and several kinds of seafood for any cooking method. The bottom line is that what they do offer is excellent, but having a bit more variety would make you see all the difference.

FAQs

Is Porter Road cheaper than Costco?

Not likely. The prices at Porter Road are a bit higher than Costco or any local shop, for that matter. This is due to the company's way of sourcing and quality control practices.

Why isn’t my Porter Road steak shipped frozen?

Some of Porter Road's meat are shipped frozen, including sausage and ground beef patties. However, most of their meats aren't because they want to preserve the freshness of the meat as much as possible. They believe that freezing may cause chemical changes which affect the product.

Is dry-aged Porter Road beef better than grocery meat?

Yes. Dry-aged beef tastes better than grocery meat because drying is a way that allows the meat to naturally tenderize for a more concentrated flavor. The meat that you buy from the supermarket or grocery store is rarely dried.

Is Porter Road meat certified organic?

The small farms that Porter Road works with have no official certification, but with their strict farming guidelines, they claim to almost always beat even the minimum USDA organic standards. They like to call the idea, "beyond organic."

Our Verdict on Porter Road Butcher

Based on recommendations and our taste test, we were quite happy with Porter Road Butcher - we think it's a good choice for your meals. We like how Porter Road sources all of its products humanely and works with local providers instead of large cattle farms.

Although we received our orders without any issues and delays, we think that high-quality meat cuts from ButcherBox still have the best flavor and consistent taste. We love how they offer a wide selection on their beef and other menu options. You also get to curate your own box and have it delivered, free of charge.

Butcher box package

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  • Humanely raised without antibiotics or added hormones
  • Customizable meat orders available
  • Select from up to 21 different cuts
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