Translated by Lester Somera
Wagyu Beef Guide: Where To Enjoy Kobe Beef And Other Wagyu Brands
Written by ニコ
While Wagyu beef is popular, few people can define exactly what "Wagyu" means. Let's learn about the types of the Japanese beef known as Wagyu, and discover some Wagyu restaurants in the Tokyo, Osaka, and Kobe area.
The Meaning Of Kobe Beef
Kobe beef is from Tajima cattle stock and must clear strict standards to be officially recognized. “Kobe-gyu” and “Kobe meat” are different names for the same brand.
The Difference Between “Wagyu Beef” And “Kobe Beef”
As we’ve explained, Kobe beef is actually a brand within the category of Wagyu beef. For Tajima cattle that have been certified as Wagyu beef, they need to meet the following conditions for Kobe beef certification. Cows must have never given birth, and bulls must have been castrated; the standard marbling value of the beef should be higher than No. 6 and their carcasses must weigh between 230-470kg (for cows) and 260-470kg (for bulls).
Trivia About Kobe Beef
・Annual Number Of Shipped Cattle
Anywhere from 30,000 to 50,000 Kobe cattle are shipped over the course of the year.
・Creating That Perfect Marbling
First, breeding professionals strictly evaluate the herd to select the cattle whose flesh is genetically predisposed to marbling, and develop exercise and nutrition routines for them, down to the last detail; it is also vital to regulate their levels of testosterone. For these reasons, Kobe beef professionals treat their cattle with the utmost care until the day that they are shipped.
・Genders Of Kobe Cattle
Only cows who have never given birth, or castrated bulls, can be recognized as Kobe beef.
Kobe cattle are raised for 30 to 32 months. Their beef is most delicious around this time, so in general, they are shipped during this period.
・Feed For Kobe Cattle
Most of the fodder given to Kobe cattle is not fresh grass, but dry grass combined with a fodder mixture to improve fat marbling. Most of this grass is carefully prepared by specialist contractors before being fed to the cows.