Originally Posted by Manton
Right, aren't the cows in Kobe actually massaged or something? I've heard that anyway.
Originally Posted by Roikins
Yes, they're not raised the same way here, lacking the massages and sake feedings. Also, I believe American Wagyu is not a pure breed, but rather the offspring of Wagyu cattle and another type which is why "American Kobe" is not as fatty and delicious as proper Japanese Kobe Wagyu.
The majority of wagyu cattle have been bread with angus here in the US so they are more accustomed to the climate and conditions. In any case, 99% of the restaurants in the US use the term "Kobe Beef" very loosely. "Kobe Beef" is a bit like "Champagne" in that the term should signify that the animal was treated a certain way (some places still do massage/rub the cow with a large hemp rope, feed it sake & beer as this is said to stimulate eating and ad more flavor to the meat) that it was raised in Kobe, and that it is pure Wagyu - or in Champagne's case, that it was made in the Champagne region and adhered to certain guidelines. Speaking of crazy beef, Matsusaka is pretty interesting: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matsusaka_beef