News of the Acme F&B opening has been peppered with mentions of a farmer friendly "whole animal allocation" program. The language came from a news release sent out a day before the restaurant officially opened its doors. I called co-owner Colleen O'Hare and asked her what the hell a whole animal allocation program is.
O'Hare told me they've been working with the guys at Local Yocal, a small processing facility and market in McKinney, to procure their meat for Good 2 Go Taco and Goodfriend in East Dallas. Before opening Acme F&B, O'Hare and her partners had use for only large cuts like chuck and brisket for tacos and burgers, but the new restaurant's more diverse menu gave them more flexibility. They were ready to purchase whole animals.
The large cuts suitable for grinding and braising still go to the Good 2 Go space, but now the premium cuts and what O'Hare described as a "mystery bag of organs" end up at Acme F&B. The staff breaks down the cuts into portion sizes and figures out what to do with the more interesting offal. This weekend heart and tongue were offered as schnitzel.
The meat from the head of the animal wouldn't be available without some intervention on the part of O'Hare and her partners. Local Yocal used to slaughter their beef the old fashioned way -- with a rifle. The practice was cheap but rendered meat from the head of the animal useless. To harvest the rest of the animal the processors needed a bolt gun. The pneumatic device renders an animal unconscious before it's processed and spares the meat from the head of the animal, but it's expensive. When O'Hare found out the folks at Local Yocal didn't want to spend the money on the new tool, she stepped in and bought one for them.
Now, because of that shiny new bolt gun, even more of each cow processed at Local Yocal is available for consumption and customers at Acme F&B will have the opportunity to try cuts they might have otherwise ignored.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.