Wagyu beef is also raised differently than any other cattle breed here in the U.S. In response to your reply about definitions, that is the definition in Japan, the biggest part of the definition is Tajima bloodline cattle, well there’s lots if registered Tajima bloodline wagyu outside Japan now days, and as far as your comment that there’s not many places to try it in America well that is wrong also, the American Wagyu Association now has over 400 members raising Wagyu in the Unitrd States I have purchased it many times online and there are many ranches that sell it. This looks so good! Therefore, all Kobe beef is Wagyu, but not all Wagyu is Kobe. Given its scarcity and price tag, most Japanese have never tasted it, and those who have generally reserve it for a very special occasion. That actually I do not know. The term Kobe, and even wagyu, is used so liberally on menus in America that customers have almost come to expect these ‘premium' options from just about any neighborhood bistro, without considering glaring facts. That is the point that some seem to be missing, for you to have Kobe beef in another country it has to have fit those criteria and therefore could only be if the meat has been exported, not the cow (unless already dead), Anyway I absolutely can’t wait to try it next week. Its prized value must also be credited to the mysterious rearing techniques said to aid the meat's delectable flavor and texture. 5: Excellent 8 – 12 So what sets Wagyu apart from other kinds of cattle? They also, of course, serve delicious Kobe beef cooked to perfection! Well I got news for them the exact same breed can and is raised in many other places of the world now and it is a fabulous product. What did you think? The difference I guess with the champagne case is that the French have successfully patented it worldwide. Fortunately for consumers, this information is available freely online. Whoever thinks Americans cannot raise the exact same cattle the Japanese do and not get a almost identical product is just plain stupid. Looks like the author of this article has read to many Forbes articles! This is all a matter of personal taste and opinion. While certainly not impossible, maintaining a 100% Tajima-gyu lineage is not the easiest task either and while much of this “American Kobe beef” may come from the same breed, it’s, more often that not, not of a pure bloodline. Grade BMS No. While I hate to put a dampener on a good story, it basically has to be put down to myth. With a diet of rich barley, golden wheat straw and potatoes, free of artificial hormones and animal byproducts, the cattle at Snake River Farms are fed four times longer than average cattle are fed. The one in Hong Kong? And the beer, massages and music, I hear you ask? However, there is no evidence that this is practiced across the board and it certainly cannot be deduced to a requirement or method in the production of Kobe beef. Unlike other meats that you can just stroll down to your local deli and purchase, Kobe beef is only exported from Japan in limited quantities and is very sought after by chefs around the world. To be deemed “Kobe beef” it is inherently Japanese. You can find a list of overseas accredited restaurants and distributors here. :). I can’t speak for your own tastes and I’ve never been to that restaurant, but, in my opinion, Kobe beef takes wagyu to a whole other level. In fact one of the staff members with you also looks familiar. 2: Below average By far the best steak I have ever tasted and the whole in the wall atmosphere and welcoming staff made it even more special. ;) Luckily for us, HK is blessed with amazing street and local food that’s also kind to our backpacking wallets. If you’re looking for something a little more personable, then you better book ahead at Steak Aoyama. You may not believe that being reared on the local grasses and following the Japanese standards on marbling and Meat Quality Score and so on, makes any difference, but there are many that would disagree with you and would say it makes all the difference to the taste and texture. These cattle were brought in as work animals to aid with rice harvesting. Let us know in the comments! Wagyu beef … You can also search by the 10-digit authentication number to check that it is a legitimate number. By no means does any wine connoisseur believe that the best sparkling wine is champagne. Again, this may not be something you agree with, but this is what Kobe beef is. So if wagyu from other countries can’t compare to theirs then why are the Japanese importing from other countries? This is not an issue for sales as there are so few heads of Kobe beef cattle produced per year so it’s not like sales are being taken away from the Japanese. Whether your a human or an animal . This allows the bacteria in the meat to break down the flesh, causing a tenderizing effect. Hahaha I’m sure there are. This restaurant has always been a hotspot of activity throughout the years, and with so many satisfied customers coming back for more, they’re always happy to serve top quality meat with top quality service. I really appreciate it. Only sells 100% dna certified Waygu. and what is the expected average price for it? Japanese beef must grade at the same level across all quality criteria to be given that status. :), This post may contain compensated links. American Kobe beef is an oxymoron. Hi Jessica, This means that all Kobe beef is Wagyu beef, but not all Wagyu beef is Kobe beef. It rather defines Kobe beef and what makes it different (whether you think that is a big difference or not) for those who are hearing about it for the first time or are perhaps seeing it on menus and are wondering what makes it special. Kobe beef is a special grade of beef from (Wagyu) cattle raised in Kobe, Japan. Regarding the beer and massage, as I mentioned in the article, some farmers may do this and it can be argued that the myths originated from actual practice. Kobe beef is comprised of a very particular strain of Wagyu called Tajima-Gyu that is raised to strict standards in the prefecture of Hyogo. While pure-bred Japanese cattle do exist in the US, meat need only be 46.9% Japanese to be labelled wagyu. While Kobe beef must have a BMS of 6+, Matsusaka must be 10-12. Thanks so much for taking the time to get in touch and comment. Most Japanese farmers refute the beer theory although it is said to induce appetite. Grade C : Below standard. Jessica Korteman is an Australian travel writer, based in Tokyo, Japan. The issue here really lies with misleading the consumer. Read through the comments as well and I understand your distinction between Kobe beef and other types of wagyu outside of Japan. Because of that I bet you will like these : In the words of Yoshinori Nakanishi, a Kobe cattle farmer who’s been in the business for nearly 40 years, “Neither I nor any beef farmer I know would ever dream of giving cows beer.”. If you've ever asked yourself, why is Kobe beef so expensive? A prerequisite of beef to be officially certified “Kobe beef” is that the bullock or virgin Tajima cow has been born in Hyogo Prefecture from a Tajima cow having a pure lineage, and that the bullock or virgin cow has been bred and raised by a designated farmer in the prefecture and slaughtered at one of the slaughterhouses in the prefecture. You may think that rearing the same type of cow elsewhere produces the same end product. Herd isolation and distinctive feeding techniques are said to have led to unique differences in taste and texture. Luckily for them, one bite of the famed “melt-in-your-mouth” fare usually requires little convincing. It is not elitist to state what the requirements are for beef to genuinely be called Kobe beef. The late great Anthony Bourdain described Kobe sliders as the worst dish in America. Confining these animals so they taste ” better” is disgusting ! :) Their website does have some delicious looking images! In the United States, there are currently only 33 restaurants that have access to genuine Kobe beef. If you are a producer of fine beef stock, then market it for what it is, great beef, not Kobe beef. We are very lucky to have these cattle in the United States so we can enjoy what Japan has enjoyed for long time. Kobe comes from the Japanese Black breed of cattle (one of the four breeds that can officially be called wagyu) that are raised in Japan’s Hyogo Prefecture according to very strict rules. I have tried Japanese and it is good, but for half the price I can buy American Kobe and it is not much different when you buy from a quality producer. In addition, you can check when the beef was exported and the company it was imported by here. Alexander’s steakhouse, Roka akor and Niku butchershop are certified Kobe beef sellers. Please also understand that wagyu is a collective term referring to a number of Japanese breeds, not a breed in itself. Our Wagyu group was purchased from Crescent Harbor Ranch in Oak Harbor, WA. Therefore opportunities are limited to try it outside of Japan. Most domestic Wagyu or hybrids would score 6-9, while Kobe usually ranks 10 or higher.”. 2: Below average 2 4: Good 5 – 7. Great job on the article! Fortunately, there is a lot you can do to protect yourself as a consumer and to avoid being duped into paying for something that is not the real deal. I like the line “epitome of fine dining.” I’ve never been to Japan before but really looking forward to go there in the future. The massage is only done because they are kept in a stall most their life and not allowed to move very much because of the linited amount of pasture in japan so it is required to keep the animal healthy. In case you’ve never heard of it, or are just curious to learn more about this insatiable food product, Kobe beef is a delicacy enjoyed around the world, but mainly prepared in the lovely country of Japan. A super salty piece of meat taste as good as what they want see. Is more than the term wagyu actually means Japanese beef production I too... Up time and let us know how you like it for your kind comment and congratulations your. Interesting article Jess!!!!! how is kobe beef raised!!!!!!!!! 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