Eat Your Phil – Belcampo Meat Company, Downtown LA

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Belcampo Meat Co. sits behind an immaculate, simple white tile counter in the bustling Grand Central Market. Over the last couple of years, Grand Central Market has seen a lot of renovation and changes. The street-style, cash-only Mexican and Asian fast food stands are now side-by-side with a Kombucha Bar and artisanal coffee roasters complete with mustachioed baristas. You can really feel the clash between the urban center that GCM used to be, and the gentrified hip spot that it’s going to inevitably become. Not that it’s all bad – because for whatever it’s worth, there is some  seriously amazing food there right now.

Case in point: Belcampo Meat Company. This Northern California butcher that raises their meat on their own farm opened its downtown location late last year in GCM, and is now serving up some killer burgers and sandwiches. This past weekend I had the Philly Cheesesteak that was jaw-droppingly delicious. The tender, thin slices of steak are heaped onto a soft roll (toasted) along with grilled onions, peppers and a rich, creamy cheese sauce. The meat is high-quality, perfectly-cooked, and juicy, but the real clincher here, is the cheese sauce made of melted cheddar and provolone. Pro tip: ask them to put the cheese sauce on the spicy fried broccolini for the classiest version of Velveeta cheese broccoli you’ve ever had!

One of the best things about Belcampo is that they raise their own meat on their farms, and they operate like your friendly neighborhood butcher shop. They will tell you the best ways to grill your burgers, the different cooking methods for charcoal grills vs. gas grills, and they even offer some fascinating and rare cuts of meat I’ve never even heard of (beef bacon! oyster steak! jowl bacon!). Next time, I am coming back for the duck sandwich.

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