Finally Friday’s – Get the Butter

by megc | 4 | Share this Article:

in Finally Fridays

This post is going to be about one of my favorite foods in the whole wide world – BUTTER! I eat a lot of butter, as many of my friends can attest, but I don’t eat just any old butter – I make an effort to buy the top quality stuff. It tastes better and is more nutritious, in general. Here are some of the more notable options I’ve found in Astoria.

Kerrygold Butter. This is my go-to butter and I usually have a block or two of it in the house at any one time. It’s made from milk from grass-fed cows, so it’s really high in CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid, a reported cancer fighter), Vitamin A and K2. And it tastes marvelous. The good news is that it is readily available in both specialty stores and at the supermarket, though there it’s usually only available there as salted butter.

Places in Astoria I’ve purchased Kerrygold butter: Key Food (various locations), Greenline Organic (22-33 31st Street), Euro Market (30-42 31st Street), and further afield at Trader Joes (Manhattan locations). It runs anywhere between $3-4 for 1/2 pound.

Organic Valley Pasture Butter. This seasonal butter is from Organic Valley and is (theoretically, at least) available May-September. Despite these limitations, I’ve seen it year-round. It is made from cows on pasture, meaning it’s grass-fed and contains a similar nutritional makeup as the Kerrygold above. It tastes really good. I like its shiny green wrapper. I’ve begun to see it more and more places around town, too.

Places in Astoria I’ve purchased Pasture Butter: Key Food (various locations), Greenline Organic (22-33 31st Street), Fresh Start (29-13 23rd Avenue), and further afield at Whole Foods (Manhattan locations). It runs anywhere between $4.50-6 for a 1/2 pound.

Kate’s Homemade Butter. This local-ish butter is made from milk that does not contain artificial hormones, and is based in New England. I have friends that swear by it. It is unclear if the cows eat grass, grain, or a combination of the two, but my guess is the latter because of its faint yellow color. It is churned in small batches, which is cool.

Places I’ve purchased Kate’s Homemade Butter: Fresh Start (29-13 23rd Avenue) is the only place I’ve seen it, but likely it’s available at the other natural food stores in the area. It runs around $3.99 for a 1/2 pound.

Beurre de Chimay. I discovered this butter last week while in Sunnyside. It is made from the milk of cows that are allowed to roam around an area on the Belgium/France border. They eat grass and get a lot of exercise. It’s incredibly creamy with a beautiful yellow color. A new favorite!

Places I’ve purchased Beurre de Chimay: Superior Market (40-08 Queens Blvd). It runs about $3.99 for a 1/2 pound.

Lurpak. I must admit, I haven’t tried this butter personally, but I hear excellent things about it. It comes from Denmark, and the milk is from both cows that eat grass and grain. It is also cultured, which gives it a bit of a tang.

Places I’ve seen Lurpak: Parrot Market (31-12 Ditmars Blvd), Euro Market (30-42 31st Street). It is a super premium butter and can cost up to $7 for a half pound.

Another option is to make your own butter from heavy cream. Joy the Baker has a recipe for homemade butter using a stand mixer, which looks excellent.

Additionally, I wanted to bring up the topic of the “Amish Butter” brand, which is all over the place these days. Be warned – it is NOT made by the Amish themselves, but is simply “rolled” in a way that is similar to the way the Amish apparently do to their butter. My friend Wardeh discussed it here. Do not be fooled by deceptive marketing!

I’m always on the look0ut for great butter and places to buy it. If you are a butter fan, what is your favorite brand? And where do you purchase it? Please leave your answers in the comments – I’m dying to know!

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Daniel Rios March 9, 2012 at 4:13 pm

Great post Meg. I love trying new butters and will have to keep an eye out for some of these next time I am out. You should see if you can find sheep’s milk butter. Artopolis bakery uses the clarified version of this in all of their pastries, clarified in house from imported butter. That’s what gives their pastries a unique flavor. Try the greek grocery next door, they may have some available.

As a baker, we usually try to use European style butter, and this is most likely Plugra brand. The taste is great with low water content and a very creamy finish. It can be found at stores locally, you may have already tried it.

I just did a post on my blog last week about butters and how you can create compound butter (flavored butters) at home to use with baked goods, hot cereal, or served over steak. It is SO EASY an the possibilities are endless.


megc March 13, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Thanks, Daniel! I will definitely check out the Greek shop next to Artoplis – I’d love to try sheep’s milk butter. I used to use Plugra all the time, but I’ve transferred over to primarily butter made from grass-fed cows, as I really enjoy the flavor and value the extra nutrition. I will check out your post on compound butter, though – that’s a great topic to write about, as compound butters are simply rad. I love them with things like basil and roasted garlic, yum.

Oh, I recently bought some butter made from Devon cream. It was at Butcher Block in Sunnyside, along with a lot of Kerrygold products. I look forward to trying it!


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