Originally Posted by Tokyo Slim
Have you ever had REAL Kobe beef? I mean purebred Wagyu, slaughtered in Kobe, Japan.
The US "Kobe Style" beef is (mostly) a Wagyu crossbreed, and in exchange for the rights to breed the pure strain overseas, the Japanese contractually still own the first rights to any and all of the cattle, so the best cows are shipped back to Japan. Anything sold in the US market is second run beef that the Japanese have already basically rejected as being sub-par. That being said, its still pretty damn good, if you don't make the mistake of cooking it like regular beef.
Supposedly true Kobe Beef is sublime. Basically you have to eat it flash seared rare, or tartare to "get it". If you cook it, you've basically ruined it. I personally have never been able to afford any, since it can run over $300 a pound over there, (and they charge almost twice as much to ship it here, which is why you can't get it here) but maybe someday I'll get the chance to try it in Kobe.
300 a pound? Jesus... I had kobe beef offered to me at a restaurant here in montreal (it was 70 bucks) but i went with braised oxtail on a bed of cheese-filled ravioli with a couple sauces, an emulsion, and fresh alba truffles.
It was the best meal ever.
Is kobe beef really that good? At the time I thought 70 bucks was a bit overkill for a steak. One day I'm gonna have to sit down and compare various qualities of steak and see if I can tell the difference. I don't eat it enough (i never order steak at restaurants) to be much of a connoiseur. That may change.