Cracking the 10!


Our branding season has wrapped up for the year, meaning all our new little calves have gotten their brands and vaccinations and are in a fresh paddock with mum growing even bigger!



Every year we strive to produce the best animals we can.  It makes us proud to see a line of calves coming through year on year that continue to impress us with their quality and consistency. 



These little guys are not far off being ready to take on the world by themselves. 



2018 is particularly exciting because it is the first year we have branded more than 10’000 calves!  That means a whole lot of Signature Beef coming your way in the future!


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Beef Australia 2018

With only a few days left to run until Beef Australia 2018 – one of the biggest beef industry showcases in the world, we thought we would walk you through how and where to find Signature Beef at the event! If you’re around Rockhampton next week, we would love to see you at the showgrounds to say hello!

We are excited to share our Oino Gustus and Kimberley Red brands will be on the menu throughout the week at:

  • Beef Australia Smokehouse (by Black Bunny Smokehouse) featuring our Oino Gustus range. Introduce yourself to Pit Master Josh, the team at Black Bunny are masters of beef and fire.
    • Grab & Go:
    • Smoked Beef Merguez Hot Link Sausage (featuring Brisket)
    • Smoked Signature Beef Brisket Burger
    • Smoked Signature Beef Short Rib Burger
    • The Pit Bean cup features brisket bacon.
    • or sit down and savour the atmosphere with
    • 12 hours Smoked Brisket or Short Rib
    • Fire Grilled Denver Steak
    • Or Share our Prime Rib Tomohawk
    • Oino Gustus Brisket, Denver, Tomahawk & Short Ribs
  • Beef Australia Bar & Grill – Fine Dining comes to Centre Ring
    • Oino Gustus Delmonico teak
    • Kimberley Red maple and bourbon glazed Biceps (the guns!)
    • Or grab & go
    • Oino Gustus Slider
    • Our Kabana Sausage (featuring brisket)
    • Or a master stock Braise with Kimberley Red
  • Headricks Lane Bar & Restaurant in Rockhampton also feature our Oino Gustus if you are headed down town
    • Oino Gustus Oyster Blade and
    • Oino Gustus Rump

We are kicking off the show at the Nose To Tail evening on Sunday 6th May.  Blair and Tess will be on stage demystifying the beef production process from paddock to plate, with celebrity butcher Matt Papandrea artfully breaking down the carcase from nose to tail! Launching from the success of the inaugural event in 2015, this year the Nose to Tail evening is taking the event national! The theatrics will be livestreamed to 5 restaurants around the country who have worked with Beef Australia to create awe-inspiring degustation menus using some hidden treasures on the beef carcase.  If you are not in Rockhampton for the event, join in the action with A Touch of Salt in Townsville; Port Office Hotel in Brisbane; Porteno’s in Sydney; Steak Ministry in Melbourne; or  A Hereford Beefstouw in Adelaide and make a booking to enjoy the evening with us!

Signature Beef is excited to partner with the Celebrity Chef Restaurant, working with international guest Jack Stein and local Queensland superstar Dominque Rizzo.  We are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with these chefs to deliver a menu that showcases the true diversity of beef.

Signature Beef will have a range of products on display in the James Lawrence Pavilion:

  • Sunday 6th May 4:15pm- 6:00pm – Chefs Demo featuring Jack Stein & Shane Bailey
  • Monday 7th May 3:45pm- 4:15pm- Butcher Shop, Talking Tasty Cuts with Dominique Rizzo
  • Wednesday 9th May 3:45pm- 4:45pm- Chefs Demo featuring Jess Pryles

Our Managing Director, Blair is the Chairman for Beef Australia, and is passionate about showcasing the celebration of industry that the platform provides.  If you are in the Handshakes program and you are there in a trade capacity, contact us to speak with one of our friendly team!

Finally, we cannot wait to share with you the delicious food, and the great company of friends throughout the industry and supply chain that come together for this wonderful week! See you at Beef Australia 2018!

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Catches Win Matches with Beef on the BBQ

Catches Win Matches with Beef on the BBQ – Day two of the Ashes are underway and the Aussie Summer of sport is upon us. How are you fuelling your team?

As temperatures start to rise here in Northern Australia, the chance of rain increases and our Aussie cricketers prepare for a series of one day and test cricket matches. Here at Kimberley we are preparing the pitch and preparing Briskets & Knuckles into our Signature Sausages to serve the hardworking batsmen and women! The perfect game-day fix.


Bowl him a bjorker and he’ll be a walker… Peter Howard, Angus Pastoral Co GM & opening batsman.

The key to the perfect Sausage is the quality of the ingredients, balancing texture and flavour. Blair’s advice to craft the perfect blend in the Kimberley Kitchen is to use Briskets for the silky fat texture (essential to the flavour during cooking). We are using our ‘Kimberley Red’ Brisket which hits a six for eating experience every time. Firstly, we begin portioning our brisket into pieces to prepare them to go through the mincer.


Any bowler worth their salt knows concentration and pace are needed to land on target, when mincing the beef ensure continual speed is kept to create the ideal texture. The next step is to introduce portions of Knuckle, to bring balance to the meat / fat ratio while maintaining a fine meat texture. We aim for a blend of approximately 75CL (75% red meat, 25% fat) creates the optimum combination to excite the taste buds.

Chatter Chatter beats the batter…

Now to bring it all together, plenty of water, a clean work space and your choice of binding and flavouring is needed. Once combined, the fun begins – carefully guiding the casing over the mixture, and crafting into perfect links. Just in time to feed the team on lunch break with a sausage sizzle – what could be more Australian than backyard cricket and homemade Beef Sausages?

The humble sausage can be transformed for any occasion. The perfect post-game platter features our gourmet smoked sausage, the perfect compliment to your cheese platter.

If the weather forecast for today is cloudy with a chance of falling wickets, forget the Weet-bix, and start your team right with a breakfast of Sausages, Smokehouse Beef Bacon rashers and eggs!

Follow along on our Instagram page for more delicious ideas of how to serve your sporting teams this Summer!


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The Missing Cuts – Brisket Edition

Dreaming of slow cooking Brisket or marinading a beef skirt, but only seeing steak or unlabelled diced beef on the retail shelf? It’s this exact frustration that inspired Signature Beef to bring ‘The Missing Cuts’ to you!

We frequent the soapbox sharing how beneficial and important for both our health and processing sustainability it is to enjoy all cuts on the carcass, but sometimes it’s just not all that easy or accessible to do. So we have decided to bring these products to you directly – from our land to your home. We can’t wait to share all the treasures on the carcase with you!

The first of these treasures is the humble Brisket.

With winter weather setting in, there is nothing that warms the cockles of your heart quite like slow cooked brisket. The combination of collagen, marbling and interconnective tissue allows it to hold shape and remain aesthetically appealing during slow cooking, while succumbing to the melt-in-your-mouth tender eating outcome.  A workable size and neat, rectangular shape allows every ounce to be utilised and no need for trimming!

That melt-in-your-mouth sensation you experience from beef fat is backed by science as well!

Compared with other fats, brisket has by far the highest ratio of monounsaturated fatty acids to saturated fatty acids.  Sound technical? Put simply the fat has a lower melting point and higher levels of oleic acid which improves mouth-feel and makes it juicier, with a big added bonus of being better for you!

At Kimberley, Blair slow roasts it with a little salt and pepper and seasons to his liking, letting the beef flavours do the talking.

The key to the perfect slow roasted brisket is cooking with the right temperatures at the right time. Once you have this mastered, one of the beautiful things about brisket is its ability to absorb flavours.

Let your imagination run wild!

Like any good Roast, the initial objective is develop crispy crackling exterior. Ensure the oven is pre-heated and roast for approximately 30minutes at 180 degrees celsius. Once the top is golden, reduce heat to as low and slow as your oven can go (90 degrees celsius) for a good 6-8 hours – we do ours overnight.  During the last hours, gently pour red wine (a little port or fortified wine goes beautifully) or marinade sauce of your choice into the stock  that has formed in the tray.

Carefully keeping the top crust of the roast dry, pour off the hot stock and lard for later. We then ‘press’ the brisket by using a flat, heavy surface (big timber cutting boards are perfect) to sit on top while refrigerating for the day. The brisket can be kept like this for several days, simply reheat the portions when needed.

When you are ready to eat, portion the brisket into serving sizes, and place back into the oven tray. Carefully seperate the chilled stock and lard. Replace the stock (keeping that crispy top dry) and simply reheat in the oven on 160 degrees celsius for approximately 20-30 minutes – until heated through.

While a little preparation is required for the twice – cooked method, it’s a simple process and the results are well and truly worth the wait!

Remember the lard we saved? This homemade source of healthy fats replaces oil in all our savoury cooking!

Stay tuned for our next release of ‘The Missing Cuts’ – delivering all the cuts on the carcase to you in portion packs with endless inspiration!

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Food Heroes – Celebrating the diversity of Beef!

When an opportunity arose to showcase what the beef carcase is capable of, our principals Blair & Josie Angus embraced the the challenge.


Blair’s mind immediately began scanning the muscles on the carcase, mentally matching cuts with cooking styles. The winning combinations were cured, smoked, twice cooked, grilled, bourguignon…

and smoked beef caramel brownies…

 Cattle were mustered to smaller holding paddocks for easy viewing.

The day started with a cracking sunrise view at the Kimberley Homestead.

After a moment of appreciation, it was all hands on deck, kneading Smokehouse Beef Rasher Scones.

Blair worked the dough as QCL’s John Walters perfected his recipe for the next regional bake-off!

  Friends and family arrived the afternoon before to lend a hand with the preparations. Age was no barrier, and 8yo Adelaide McArthur was right at home helping her brothers and cousin hold a mob of maiden heifers steady for the crowd.


A highlight was having Greg Chappell from Dulverton Angus walk through his selection process for     local producers with a line of upcoming bulls. Blair & Josie shared their story about the development of Angus Pastoral Co’s genetic progression.


The next stop was the Feedlot, where Josie, Blair and Tess shared the selection process for Signature Beef’s brands, as well as the feeding programs.

 Soon it was time for our own rations…

…before pulling up a hay bale and settling in for the Panel Session.

QCL’s talented team of journalists had producers drafted off under shady trees with recorders and notepads all day. To read what they had to say, follow the links below:

To all who attended – days like these are the perfect reason to hang up your spurs for a day and catch up with your mates, so we sincerely thank you for joining us.

 Finally, credit to Queensland Country Life & QRAA to Kimberley for initiating and executing such a consumer focused program, we sincerely believe our fellow primary producers share our pride in being Food Heroes.



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The Finer Things…

Weaners on the march

There is a certain romanticism to the life we lead out here, which becomes even more evident when we head north to our breeding block, Carpentaria Downs.

We have just spent 10 days beginning our annual weaner muster, and I can tell you (straight from the horse’s mouth) that if good beef is like a fine wine, 2016’s crop is going to be an excellent vintage!

Some thirsty weaners and a young horse (6th time mustering) to guide them to water

A little while ago, we covered the weaning process in Part 2 in The Life Of A Feeder Steer (scroll back through our past blogs if you haven’t read it yet!).  Watching our little boys and girls learn to be confident without the security of their mothers brings us such pride in our cattle each year when we go through the weaning muster.  The trust they place in us, having faith that the horses will take them to a place they want to go to, brings a smile to our faces.

Jackson Holloway and Sarah Murray, happy with the mob’s performance

It all comes down to the fact that we want our cattle to live calm and happy lives, because ultimately, they taste better in the end.  By putting them through a series of activities and rewarding them for doing the right thing, they are then calm whenever they meet that particular activity in their future.

Marching them home to the yards after a good few hours eating

Not only do we find immense reward in our weaner training endeavours, we love spending time at Carpentaria.  It’s our little isolated corner of heaven, where the emails and phones are put away, with the exception of a few minutes per day, and we can get back to the things we love.  For instance, this muster, we have a few young horses and young working dogs learning alongside our young cattle.

Young pup Jack learns how to work the lead

The serenity of such a beautiful landscape…

View from the saddle – some breeders camped in the Einsleigh River

… the satisfaction of a successful weaning education…

Blair and his dogs (Felix, Jill, Buster R-L) keeping a watchful eye on the mob

… and the simplicity of life makes the daily hustle worth it in the end.

Blair with Alex Black, keeping an eye on 1’100 little ones as they fill their stomachs

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The Life Of A Feeder Steer – Part 4

We left you with our cattle in the feedlot, and now we delve into the final chapter in the paddock to plate journey.

Upon the completion of their time on feed, the cattle are trucked to a service-kill abattoir facility.  From there, our Sales and Production Manager, Tess Camm, successfully distributes all the cuts to nearly 30 countries across the globe. 

Tess’s job involves knowing an incredible amount about the carcase, in order to be able to predict what she will have to work with and specify to the plant how many kilograms of which cut will go to which market, before the cattle even arrive.  She has upwards of 2000 possible codes to work with, with each code designating what the product name is, the age of livestock and market eligibility of product, how it is cut and finally, the way it is packed.  A 4.2kg striploin destined for China needs a completely different code to a 3.2kg striploin destined for Europe, and so on.

Leading up to a production, Tess is reviewing orders, and fitting them into a matrix that is representative of the yields she is likely to produce.  From here she can determine which orders will be filled this week.  There is only so much meat on the carcase, and Tess relishes the puzzle of figuring out where it will all end up.

As you can see, it’s quite a journey for each animal, starting from north QLD, and ending up almost anywhere in the world.  From paddock to plate, we take pride in treating our animals with care and respect.  In the words of Temple Grandin, “We breed them for ourselves, the least we can do is show them some respect.”  Ultimately, that also gives us a distinction of product, because a happy animal tastes better too!

Thank you for taking this journey with us!

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The Life Of A Feeder Steer – Part 3

Last week, we left off after the weaning process.  At this point, our cattle have graduated their education, arrived at Kimberley, and are ready to begin their adult life.

Upon arrival at Kimberley, they will spend 6-12 months in the paddock growing with their mates.  It’s mostly eating grass, growing, cruising around the paddock and hanging out with mates – a hard life!  We call this process backgrounding.  After they have grown, they begin to periodically come through the yards, where the lead of the mob is selected for entry into the feedlot.

Feedlot inductions occur every 2-4 weeks, and involve the steer or heifer receiving a management tag and vaccinations.  The management tag displays the week number they were inducted and an individual number for that steer.  For example, the 42nd steer we inducted in the 36th week of the year will have a tag that reads 36-42, as the young gentleman on the left is displaying below.

The vaccinations they receive are booster shots to the immunisations the animal has received as a calf, and work to prevent any kind of disease or illness they could encounter and manage any parasites they may come in contact with.

Our cattle spend between 70 and 200 days on a grain-feeding program, depending on which brand they are destined for.  Early maturing cattle take the express route for our 70-day ‘Sondella’ brand. The most popular program is our 110-day program, which brings you our renowned Kimberley Red and its European equivalent Angus Pastoral Co.  Our 200-day grain fed cattle are handpicked by Blair for their ‘mossy’ coat and temperament.  The ‘mossy’ coat is indicative of fine silky hair, which has been proven to be consistent with a finer texture within the meat.  They then feed on a longer, slower feeding program, with only 11% grain for the first 100 days, in order to produce the highest quality beef we can offer, in our Oino-Gustus brand.

Join us again next week for the completion of this journey!

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The Life Of A Feeder Steer – Part 2

Last week we began exploring the journey our cattle take, from paddock to plate.  This week, we are continuing with the next step in the life of a feeder steer.

The weaning process, which we normally start in September, involves educating our young cattle.  During the weaning muster, we will also move cows to a fresh paddock.  Our cows rotate paddocks regularly, whether it is in the branding muster or the weaning muster, and the paddocks are spelled to sustain growth into the next season.  The weaners are brought home to the yards.

We put them into an intensive training course on how to be civilised.  They are taught how to respond to pressure and move as a mob; how to move through the yards in a calm and orderly fashion; how to react to humans, horses and working dogs; and generally how to behave themselves and live as adults.

Each day they are moved around with the horses and dogs until they can calmly follow a horse through the yards.  They will also practice being drafted, learning that the whole process isn’t that scary and how to act appropriately.

They are then taken outside, into small paddocks, where they are ‘tailed’.  Tailing involves allowing them to graze an area for a few hours, while the horses act as the fence around them.  They learn how to recognise what we are asking of them, and behave calmly because they understand.  They then return to the yards.

Weaner training is nearly a full time job because of the amount of time and care we take in their education.  It is a good behaviour reward system that we use, and it works well for them.  A calm animal that exhibits the traits we are looking for, is also going to be a better quality eating experience.  Stress makes the animal develop tighter cross linkages in the meat fibres, resulting in tougher meat.  By teaching our weaners the way we do, we are ensuring they are less likely to be stressed as they meet these situations in their future.

After they pass their training, they all end up at Kimberley.  Most of them are bred at Carpentaria, in North QLD, so they take a trip on a road train to their new home in Central QLD.

Join us again next week as we continue the journey!

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The Life Of A Feeder Steer – Part 1


Ask any grazier, rancher or cattleman in the world, and he will tell you that his livestock are his top priority.   Here at Signature Beef, we are no different.  Cattle are our livelihood, and we genuinely love them.  Keep this a secret from the herd, but we do have favourites.  Dad’s is B-11, a beautiful Angus cow who has delivered exceptional calves year on year for nearly a decade.  Growing up on the land ingrains a love for these animals, however you also learn the circle of life and its importance.














As a calf, a feeder steer spends his days with mum.  Valuable information is passed on from generation to generation.  Plants that are ok to eat, and plants that are not ok to eat.  How to spot a predator or threat, and respond accordingly.  Whether or not that car driving past is actually terrifying. Young bulls watch the older bulls to learn how to fight, then spar with each other before attempting to beat the older bulls.  Calves learn from their mothers how to act through example.   Cattle are incredibly reflective of their mothers and the environment they are raised in.

Calves experience humans from their early days, they see us as we check the waters and fences of their paddocks.  And they see us in the branding muster, when they are moved, with their mothers, to stockyards to be branded.  This allows them to be identified for the remainder of their lives.  They also receive a tetanus shot to keep them healthy.  They then return to their paddock, normally within 24 hours.

When the mother decides she is ready to have her next calf and has sufficiently looked after her current calf, she will naturally wean it.  By this stage, the calf is able to look after itself, and we begin the weaning muster.

Join us next week for the next instalment in The Life of a Feeder Steer!

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