I just placed an order for this at Home Depot.com. They have free shipping! Why should I go to the store and lug it home in my Dad's truck when I can have it done for free?
[url=http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeId=10051&langId=-1&catalogId=10053&productId=202105185&R=202105185#.UFaj1o4n_0M]3.0 cu. ft. Upright Freezer in Stainless Steel/Black-UF-311S at The Home Depot[/url]
It's the three extra cubic feet of storage space I need to make this work. And it's purty enough to be in the kitchen not the garage.
I realize I am getting to this thread late, but wanted to be sure to share my experience with this particular business so that others might avoid my fate.
The ranch is called EDEN TROPICS & is run by TAREK AYOUB, located in TEMECULA, CA. He can be seen frequently advertising on Craig's List. I had been communicating with him via email over the course of a month or so, so when I finally received a check I'd been expecting (that is to say that in the last couple of years we've experienced a reversal of fortune so that we're broke, & I had to wait on this check to be able to buy. It took the whole check) I had felt comfortable proceeding with the purchase of a side of beef from a steer approx. 650# = $699. It left me completely without any cash, and with a ways to go until my husband's next disability check. But I felt it was the best choice for us because increasingly there seems to keep being more month than money or food & I just couldn't take explaining to my sons anymore why we're skipping another meal or why I'm feeding them crap. If only I could get us on a cycle of purchasing sides of beef and maybe see if I could find pigs well priced, I could get us out of this downward spiral. So, now you have an idea of where my head was at going in, and Tarek knew all this too btw.
This last Saturday, 06/22/2013, we're to be at his property at 7pm, that's when he was to receive the current orders back from the butcher. We're exactly on time and to this point he'd already received my deposit via Paypal & I arrived with the balance in cash, exact change I literally didn't have a penny to spare. About 45min - 1hr after we got there another couple arrived. It was clear they had a history together, shared heritage eastern European, Muslim, & i felt like a 5th wheel.. So I took Tarek up on his previous invitation to pick from several of his fruit trees, that's what I did as to not be rude overhearing private conversations and frankly I wasn't that interested. Another 45 min or so went by, and I can still feel it like I'm there, it was weird we were in the same area around his apple & plum trees but separated when a palpable chill went though
me. There was this 180° change in the atmosphere that was so tangible, but of course I dismissed it.
Not long after that, probably about 1/2 hr, the guy with the meat finally showed up, at which point Tarek excused himself from the group and asked for a minute with the driver. Once again I'm thinking "Sure, they probably have business to discuss which has nothing to do with my order. And that's none of my business and I'm not interested anyway, just hurry up!" Then finally after we'd waited for at least 2 hrs & had been there first, and were new customers with a potential for return business, what does Tarek do but make a beeline for his friends car to load them first. I didn't catch all of this, my husband who'd been in the car this whole time had front row to this particularly rude behavior. Well finally time to start the 2 hr drive back home, I'm so tired when we get there I have my kids help bring the meat in from the car, we get it in the freezer & go to bed.
Next morning I go to inventory what we have, different menu plans dancing around in my head, only to find that there is NO LOIN, NO SIRLOIN & ONLY ONE RIBEYE!!!!! THESE CUTS ARE THE WHOLE REASON THIS IS SUCH A GREAT DEAL, OTHERWISE YOUR JUST BUYING A BUNCH OF CHUCK, ROUND & FLANK!!! I immediately contacted Tarek via email to notify him of the descrepancy, to which he has responded "calm down", "its only 3 cuts of meat, you got everything else", and he'd "compensate me $69"! I wasn't in the market for $629 worth of chuck, round & flank!!! And where am I supposed to get all that I'm short for $69 anyway?
No apologies, no outrage that the butcher screwed up and he'd get to the bottom of it & fix it. None of that & no explanation as to where the rest of my meat was, he just refused to discuss it. It didn't just up & disappear. I'm confident what happened was when we we're around the apple and plum trees was when screwing me over was decided on, then when he wanted a moment with the driver at the truck was when I was screwed, then just to seal the deal his rude insistence on loading his friend's car first was to make sure the doctored boxes got to the right vehicle.
I'm making an effort to ensure this never happens again by this man. Its left me heartbroken. Of note: of the meat I did receive about 50% of the vacuum seals have failed, the meat smells funny & tastes weird and the butcher is a hack - this meat is a mess. I no longer have any confidence that what I do have isn't road kill. To top it off at the last minute one of our neighbors had expressed an interest in buying a side of beef thru us and our new source at $4/#, they offered that price as a starting point stating they'd paid $6/# in the past and that this would be great for them. This would have meant our side would have just cost us the gas for 2 round trips and I can't tell you what a blessing that would have been for my hungry family. Now I'm faced with fighting this guy for my $. Its a nightmare.
Thank you for the post! I've also been in contact with this guy and he has come off kind of strange. I was getting ready to make a purchase but I'm glad I didn't after reading this post.
Id pay $2/lb for 300 lbs of ground any day, but shoddy butchering and a mystery butcher would kill the desl for me. -Eric
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$2/lb for grass-fed beef in California is too good to be true, there has to be a hidden gotcha.