What Is Waygu Beef? And Is It Worth Purchasing?

Why is wagyu beef so costly at a steakhouse, and is it also worth it? We believe your cash is much better spent in other places.

You don’t require a six-figure wage to go to a steakhouse … unless you’re considering the wagyu beef area, of course. Seriously, the cost of wagyu steaks on a steakhouse food selection is enough to take your breath away. The smallest wagyu steak costs more than the biggest filet mignon (one of the most expensive regular steak on the food selection). Usually, wagyu steak ribeye can run more than $200 per extra pound (that’s $12.50 per ounce!), so what offers? Why is wagyu beef so costly, as well as could this uber-expensive steak really be worth it?

What is Wagyu Beef?
The word wagyu has a quite actual translation: “wa” indicates Japanese, and also “gyu” is cow. But that does not indicate that any type of Japanese cow qualifies. Wagyu beef breeds are thoroughly chosen, as well as genetic testing is used to make certain only the very best are permitted right into the program. By paying so much interest the genes, the beef comes to be genetically predisposed to have a higher quality than the majority of steaks, as well as this tender, well-marbled beef really does taste much better than the competition.

In Japan, just four kinds of cattle are used: Japanese Black, Japanese Brown, Japanese Polled and Japanese Shorthorn. American wagyu programs largely use Japanese Black, although there are a couple of Japanese Brown in the mix (called Red Wagyu in the States).

Why is Wagyu Beef so Costly?
In 1997, Japan stated wagyu a national treasure as well as outlawed any type of further exportation of livestock, which suggests they largely manage the marketplace on wagyu beef. American ranchers are working hard to boost the production of this popular beef, yet only 221 pets were exported to the United States before the restriction remained in place. That’s a tiny swimming pool considering that Japan makes use of kids testing to make certain only the very best genes are kept for breeding.

The various other point that maintains wagyu so pricey is Japan’s strict grading system for beef. The United States Division of Farming (USDA) identifies beef as Prime, Choice, Select or a reduced grade. The Japanese Meat Grading Association (JMGA) goes into way more depth with wagyu, rating the beef’s yield as well as ranking quality based on fat marbling, color, brightness, firmness, texture, as well as high quality of fat. The highest grade is A5, yet the fat quality ratings are crucially essential. These scores vary from 1 to 12, as well as by JMGA requirements, USDA prime beef would just achieve a fat quality score of four.

Is Wagyu Beef Well Worth It?
There are a lot of techniques to obtain affordable meat to taste fantastic, so why decrease so much coin on wagyu? For starters, it actually thaws in your mouth. The fat in wagyu beef thaws at a lower temperature than a lot of beef, which gives it a buttery, ultra-rich flavor. All that fat also makes the beef juicier than a normal steak, as well as considering that it consists of extra fats, it likewise has an extra appealing aroma.

If it’s so tasty, why would we suggest avoiding wagyu at the steakhouse? Since it’s also rich to eat in its entirety steak. Wagyu and Kobe beef is finest consumed in smaller, 3- or four-ounce sections; a significant steak would overload your taste buds. Considering its high price tag, you intend to appreciate every bite!

To make the most out of your steakhouse experience, get a steak that you can not locate at the regional butcher store (like dry-aged steaks). Or go all-in for a tomahawk steak or another honker that you might not typically prepare. (Psst! We’ll reveal you how to cook a thick steak at home, if you’re up for the challenge!) Save the wagyu for a recipe like yakitori-style beef skewers, or standard Japanese meals like shabu-shabu or sukiyaki that include very finely sliced beef. These dishes will certainly allow you enjoy the flavor of this top quality beef in smaller amounts (without breaking the financial institution, too).