Willock Park English longhorns

The oldest breed of British beef cattle are celebrated for their depth of flavour.

WHO In Meningie, South Australia, meat maestro Richard Gunner and his wife, Elizabeth, have overseen the development of Australia's first English longhorn cattle herd, with 33 pedigree cows and bulls kept as stud animals. A further herd of 150-odd longhorns cross-bred with South Devon or Angus is raised for beef, sold through the Gunner family's Feast! Fine Foods butcher shops.

WHY Four years ago, Adelaide's Jock Zonfrillo, owner-chef of Orana and Street ADL, encouraged Gunner to start breeding longhorns, the oldest breed of British beef cattle, for their great depth of flavour. It hasn't been an easy project, Gunner says, because these big, bullock-sized beasts take at least 30 months to reach an average carcass weight of 450kg.

HOW To maximise the return on these rare beasts, Gunner commissioned British-born chef Phil Whitmarsh (whose nose-to-tail menu was celebrated when he cooked at The Daniel O'Connell Hotel) to use every last bit of the few longhorns butchered so far. So, in addition to the standard cuts, Gunner is selling branded longhorn beef fat, stocks, as well as pies and sausages made from beef trim.

WHERE A few Adelaide restaurants (Orana, Street ADL, Africola and Magill Estate) get most of the meat, but some cuts are available through Gunner's Feast! Fine Foods butcher shops, in addition to the longhorn stock, flavoured tallow, sausages and pies.

Feast! Fine Foods, (08) 8188 4666


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