If you love steak, then you've probably heard of Wagyu beef.
It's hailed by meat lovers worldwide as being some of the best cuts available. In terms of meat, it literally doesn't get better than this. However, high up at the top of the Wagyu world sit two products split by nearly 7,000 km.
Australian and Japanese Wagyu.
Let's dive into the differences between these two breeds of beef, discovering everything you need to know about Australian and Japanese Wagyu beef!
What is the difference between Australian Wagyu and Japanese Wagyu?
Australian Wagyu and Japanese Wagyu are two distinct breeds that produce luxurious, marbled meat. Although the two have some similarities, they have deeply rooted differences.
For example, Australian Wagyu is known for its intense marbling, while the quality of marbling in Japanese Wagyu depends on its region; USDA-graded A5 is the most highly prized. Japanese Wagyu tends to be more marbled than Australian.
In contrast, Australian Wagyu has a higher fat content than its Japanese counterpart due to different cattle-rearing methods.
Furthermore, Australian Wagyu is also more affordable than high-grade Japanese Wagyu since production methods are cheaper. Ultimately, both offer a delicate flavor and supremely satisfying texture, but if you're looking for something special, you can't really get better than a cut of A5 from Japan!
What's the History of Wagyu Cattle?
Wagyu cattle have a history that is truly fascinating, dating back over 35,000 years.
Originating in Japan, Wagyu cows were often fed beer and massaged with sake to encourage the growth of flavorful marbling. Evolutionarily, this was driven by powerful shogun or samurai wanting their cuts of meat to be as succulent and tender as possible.
From there, the breed spread worldwide, and Wagyu has become known for its high-fat content, extreme marbling, and tenderness. This is why it's often referred to as the king of Beef! Its popularity is unmatched due to its pleasing taste, mouthfeel, and superior nutritional qualities when compared to other types of beef.
Why is Wagyu Beef so Expensive?
Wagyu beef is the diamond standard of high-quality steaks, but it comes at a hefty price. Wagyu beef comes from cows that have been selectively bred to produce extra marbling, resulting in intensely flavorful and tender cuts of meat.
This higher quality is reflected in their significantly higher cost compared to pricier cuts of regular steak. Because the cows are raised using specialized feeding techniques, they also require more time before being slaughtered, making them even more costly.
Despite the expense, Wagyu beef continues to be one of the most sought-after delicacies that offer unprecedented quality and taste.
Which is Better - Australian or Japanese Wagyu?
At the end of the day, it really depends on your own preferences when determining which type of Wagyu is better. Generally speaking, Japanese Wagyu is of higher quality and more expensive than Australian Wagyu. However, if you're looking for an affordable option that still offers excellent flavor and marbling, then Australian Wagyu could be a great choice.
Ultimately, you can't go wrong with either type of Wagyu - it's all about finding the one that fits your tastes and budget.
Here at The Standard Meat Club, we offer a comprehensive range of both Australian and Japanese Wagyu. Both are some of the highest quality cuts around, so you no longer have the choice between both. Just enjoy whichever Wagyu you're in the mood for and enjoy meat how it's meant to be tasted.