How to Buy and Grill a Dry-aged Steak

Steak is something that many are passionate about. Dry-aged steak requires another level of that passion altogether. There is a lot of care and work that goes into the production of a dry-aged steak. How does one buy a dry-aged steak? How do you properly grill it? If you are going to invest in dry-aged steak – because they are more expensive - you will need to know these things.


Things to Know About Dry-aged Steak

If you have never tried a dry-aged steak before, there are a few things you need to know about them.

  • It isn’t individual cuts of steak that are aged, but a whole part that is aged and the steaks cut from that whole.

  • The longer a piece of beef is aged the more depth of flavor it will develop.

  • The aging process uses the natural enzymes within the meat to break down the connective tissues in the meat itself which will make it more tender.

  • This same process removes moisture from the meat and allows the lipids within the muscle (the fat that marbles the meat) to break down.

  • A dry-aged steak will be a deep burgundy, nearly purple color.

  • Cuts that have been properly dry-aged for 30 to 42 days will be less tender than a steak dry-aged longer, however, they will be at peak beef flavor, providing a buttery and roast-beefy taste when properly cooked.

  • Any beef that has been aged for 45 days and up will begin to develop a gamey-nutty flavor with the supercharged beef.

  • Beef that has been aged for 90 days or longer will develop a crust that is very similar to the rind on a cheese. This is a good thing. It will also establish a flavor similar to bleu cheese thanks to the same types of bacteria used in the production of said cheese.



If you have never experienced a dry-aged steak before, it can be better to start slow. Try a steak that has been aged between 30 and 42 days. That way you can enjoy maximum beef flavor before things get too funky.


How to Buy a Dry-aged Steak

You are investing in yourself and a meal. Dry aging a steak is a lengthy process that requires great care, which is why this will be a more expensive bite than you would normally experience. Here is what you should know about purchasing your dry-aged steak.

When purchasing a dry-aged steak, you should do so on the day that you are going to cook it. Never freeze that meat unless absolutely necessary, and if frozen, allow it to thaw slowly in the refrigerator. The only issue with this is that you don’t want to continue to age your steak in an environment that isn’t ideal for doing so – ie: your fridge. A great relationship with your butcher can help with this. They can cut the steak to the exact thickness you want right then and there. Buying online, unseen can be tricky as you may not get what you are actually asking for.

As discussed in our article about the grades of steaks available, it is imperative that you purchase a Prime or AAA graded beef. You should also select a good steak to cook. New York Strips are usually available all of the time, you may also consider a ribeye bone in or out, T-Bones or the similar-looking porterhouse are also commonly dry-aged selections. You can discuss with the butcher how long the meat has been aging as well. This will give you the ability to select a flavor profile that would be more suited to your tastes. Remember, the longer it has been dry aging, the more intense and unique the flavor will be.




How to Grill a Dry-aged Steak

Steak is steak, right? You just cook it.
Not exactly. To create the perfect meal, you want to ensure you use the right cooking method no matter what. It is just the same with a dry-aged steak. To ensure the most tender and delicious bite, it is suggested to cook it to a doneness that is a little less than that you usually eat. It is often suggested that you never cook a dry-aged steak past medium-rare. This is due to the steak containing a lot less moisture than a non-dry-aged counterpart. Always use a meat thermometer to guarantee the doneness temperature is just right. On the bright side, a dry-aged steak is dry, meaning you will get an incredible sear.

The reverse sear technique is the ideal technique for a very thick cut dry-aged steak because you can heat the steak gently, then hit it with high heat. This slowly relaxes the tissues and melts the marbled fat within the steak.

  1. Remove the steaks from the fridge and allow them to rest and bloom while the grill preheats.

  2. Prepare your grill for cooking.

    • On a gas grill, preheat the main grill to about 300°F using the indirect heating method.

    • On a charcoal grill, light a load of charcoal and pile it to one side. Close the vents to keep the heat low, around 300°F.

  3. Just before grilling, insert the probes from the Napoleon Bluetooth BBQ Thermometer and season with a little salt and pepper. Place the steak onto the grill between the lit burners (indirect heat).

  4. Cook until an internal temperature of 125°F.

  5. Remove the steak from the grill and allow it to rest while you heat the Infrared SIZZLE ZONE™ sear station or heat the main burners to high.

  6. Sear the steak for 2 to 4 minutes per side over direct high heat to finish.


While you don’t want to attempt to bring the steak to room temperature as that would take far too long and introduce negative bacteria to your steak, it is ideal to allow the outside of the steak to warm a little before going to the grill. Further, salting too soon, in this case, will pull the little moisture left in the steak out preventing a good sear and changing your steak’s texture.


This is why you should never overcook a steak



Think of a dry-aged steak as the difference between a fresh, handmade cheese, like mozzarella, and a well-aged cheese like parmesan. It develops a depth of flavor and fragrance you don’t get from something a little fresher. Now that you know how to buy and grill a dry-aged steak, will you go and splurge? Share your dry-aged masterpiece, favorite cut, recipe, and your success stories on our social pages like Facebook and Instagram, using the hashtags #DryAgedSteak and #NapoleonGrills.

Happy Grilling!

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