Our nearest neighbors, the Brekers – that is Jacob and Kari Breker – are in the thick of their spring calving season. Jacob, his brother Greg, and his dad Jeff Breker (Joe’s first cousin) have quite the beef cattle operation just a couple miles from Coteau des Prairies Lodge. They have been gracious to allow many of our curious lodge guests onto their farm, where they raise cattle from birth to finish. Come June, the cow/calf pairs will be grazing the lush native prairie surrounding the lodge, but for now the cows are in the birthing pen where calves are popping out left and right!
Calving is an intense season for a cattleman. With up to 10 births or more per day on the Breker farm, Jacob has his hands full caring for both the cows and the calves. Most of the time, mamma and baby are fine as nature takes its course and the cow/calf instinct immediately kicks in. Other times, they need a little help. Sometimes mamma gets a little confused about which calf is hers or perhaps a calf has a hard time finding mamma’s life giving milk or maybe a cow needs help giving birth, there is a long list of potential scenarios the cattleman needs to be prepared for at any hour of the day. That’s why Jacob is keeping a close eye on the herd around the clock.
The extra work will pay off, for having a successful calving season will translate into more healthy calves in the summer.
Jacob, Greg and Jeff also finish calves at their feedlot. To ‘finish’ means to feed the calves the proper diet to prepare them, or ‘fatten them up’, to be processed for the beef market. The goal is to raise healthy and happy animals which, in turn, produce delicious beef. The Brekers finish their own calves and they also buy calves from other ranchers in the region. They have animals ready for processing throughout the year.
28 Day Dry Aged Breker Beef
As you may already know, we work closely with our cousins, the Brekers, to select the best animals from their beautiful herd to process and serve to our guests at Coteau des Prairies Lodge. What makes our beef extra special is the 28 day dry aging method used by our local butcher Ron Mahoney, from the Butcher Block in Oakes, to process our beef. Not only is our ultra local beef raised by expert cattlemen who live next door, but because of the time honored dry aging process, the beef is more tender, more flavorful, more aromatic and more juicy than your typical super market cut. You really oughta come out and try it!