Select, Choice and Certified Angus Beef (CAB) strip loin steaks were sold in Lubbock, TX to determine consumer acceptability. A home survey was attached to each package of steaks (return=191 steak evaluations). Consumers did not detect differences in tenderness or flavor, but rated CAB steaks juicier (P<0.05) than Select or Choice. However, 68% of CAB consumers rated steaks as extremely or very tender, but less than half rated Choice and Select steaks the same way. Consumer tenderness and flavor scores for Select steaks were more variable, but consumer satisfaction and tenderness acceptability did not differ (P>0.05) between grades. Trained sensory panelists rated CAB steaks higher (P<0.05) than Choice or Select for all palatability traits except flavor intensity. Shear force decreased (P<0.05) by quality grade as CAB steaks sheared with the least resistance. These results showed marbling influenced objective palatability measures and decreased the variation in both objective and consumer measures of palatability. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS: Quality grades were established to predict beef palatability, but marbling can be an unreliable predictor of tenderness. Branded beef programs, such as Certified Angus Beef (CAB), have been developed to distinguish higher palatability products and provide more consistent products for consumers. Consumers can distinguish between levels beef tenderness and are willing to pay a premium for tender beef. Moreover, consumers find product consistency is moderately important when purchasing fresh beef. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine consumer acceptability based on in-home evaluations of strip loin steaks from United States Department of Agriculture Select and Choice grades and CAB purchased from a retail supermarket environment.