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Chef Marc Hennessy on the Birkin Bag of Beef

By Michael M. Clements | February 13, 2019 | Food & Drink People

Rare Steakhouse Chef Marc Hennessy brings originality to his craft... including the exclusive Birkin bag of beef.


What’s your approach to making steak unique?
MARC HENNESSY: I want each steak to be special and have its own identity focused on the guest’s experience. This leads to sourcing from different regions, using different breeds, different aging times and different butchering styles.

Does that mean sourcing locally?
MH: Local farms often offer more natural and healthful ways of raising the meat. This meat also has a flavor connected to the terroir resulting from what the cows eat, how those genetics have been cultivated through the generations, how they interact with the humans that are there; even the weather has an impact.

Which local farms do you use?
MH: Most recently Autumn Olive Farms for a limited-edition Jersey Angus mix. We’re also working with Fox Run Farms on a 100 percent grass-fed, grass-finished Black Angus-only beef. Both are raised naturally on pastures in Virginia and never receive hormones or antibiotics.

What’s your favorite dish?
MH: Right now the 100 percent grass-fed beef we are doing has me really excited. Hands-down for me, the best flavor and texture of any meat I’ve encountered before. It’s like it was meant to be.

What’s the story behind the Birkin steak?
MH: It a culmination of nose-to-tail butchering, knowing the story and strategy of the Birkin bag from Hermès, and having some fun with it. My old boss and friend chef David Burke infected me with a certain behind-the-scenes fun that I haven’t shaken off.

How can we get it?
MH: That’s a well-kept secret. Come by sometime and I’ll give you the inside scoop.