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Butchers compete in Texas Roadhouse National Meat Cutting Challenge

Butchers compete in Texas Roadhouse National Meat Cutting Challenge

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Eleven lucky butchers from Indiana and Ohio on Tuesday hoped to land in the top spot from this year’s Texas Roadhouse National Meat Cutting Challenge.

With steady hands and razor-sharp focus, the butchers came face to face at at Zink Distributing Co. in near-freezing temps for a chance to win a grand prize,

Darwin Calderon, a kitchen manager for Texas Roadhouse, said, “It’s hard. I think the temperature makes it a little difficult, but I think everybody can do it.”

The meat cutters hoped to take home a $25,000 prize in the Cutting Challenge.

Some butchers traveled from Muncie, Fishers, and even Reynoldsburg, Ohio, to make the cut for the semifinals and eventually the final competition.

“I could really use $25,000 in my life. Anybody could. So, I’m just really appreciative for the whole opportunity,” Nick Miller, a competitor, said.

Organizers say competitors receive up to 40 pounds of meat, including one sirloin, one filet and one ribeye to cut. They’re judged by how many steaks they hand over, with the highest quality cut in the least amount of time.

Meat-cutter Nick Miller called it a unique challenge. “It’s nothing I’ve ever done before. I was in finance before this, and we didn’t really have competitions.”

Darwin Calderon says some of his staff members are competing. He says, for some, it’s an opportunity to grow in the industry. “It’s just like you’re motivating them. The more you motivate them and coach the meat cutters, they want to do it. It’s exciting and it’s fun.”

Calderon’s workers spend eight hours a day cutting meat for Texas Roadhouse fans.

Organizers say this competition is a chance to show their appreciation. Jade Poor, the marketing coach of Texas Roadhouse, said, “It’s really just a go and show their skills, show our appreciation to them and how cool it is that we hand cut our steaks every single day, so it really is a testament to their talent of what they’re doing at our restaurants every day.”

Organizers say the semifinals and the final competition will be in March.