Japanese A5 Wagyu
Like fine wines, the flavors and legendary intramuscular fat structures of Japanese Wagyu vary noticeably, not just from region-to-region (known as Prefectures), but from farm-to-farm based on genetics, feeding protocols and husbandry.
Miyazakigyu has a long tradition of excellence. This special beef was the first to win the Prime Minister's award at the Wagyu Olympics three consecutive times as well as the top overall prize two times in a row — a testament to Miyazakigyu's reverence and recognition at Japan’s national level and beyond. Miyazaki was the first province to export wagyu to the United States, and the beef was soon adored for its unique balance of meat quality and intramuscular fat. This balance allows more to be enjoyed at once, elevating the eating experience so that the rich, flavor-packed bursts of umami can be savored in their full glory.
This purebred Wagyu is from the Miyachiku co-op. It’s named after the breed known as “Japanese Black” or Kuroge Washu — used by Miyachiku — and is one of the four Wagyu breeds around. In 2007, the Miyazaki was dubbed the “Champion Cow” in the “Wagyu Olympics”. From there, its name became more famous, thus helping propel its fame. The cattle here are fed primarily a diet of wheat and corn for approximately 900 days.
HIKAMI FARMS // KOBE WINE BEEF
Kobe Wine Beef is raised with recycled feed from Kobe wine production. In order to guarantee its taste, its definition is firmly established by the Kobe Wine Beef Association.
A collaboration between Kobe's local wine and Japanese Black Beef. Kobe Wine Beef is special in that the cattle are fed with the grape lees produced from when the Kobe wine is made. Kobe wine is known for its fresh taste made possible with locally grown grapes but since the lees also contain polyphenol, this improves the cattle's health as well.
This is the only place in the world that raises Kobe Wine Beef. The cattle here are fed a steady diet of food that has the lees from wine grapes – the rest of the feed is a mix of sugar canes, beer lees as well natto bacteria. Additional feed is hay. Ukutanba, Hyogo – the region in which this farm is in – is also known for its Tanba beef as well as the Aka Jidori chicken.
Production of Kobe Wine Beef started very small at only 30 head of cattle. It has now blossomed into 1200 cattle.
Kobe Beef would surprise and delight even the person who has it all — it’s a treasure they’ll cherish and remember forever. Not many people in the US can say they’ve had authentic Kobe Beef; Kobe represents less than 0.25% of Japanese Kuroge black cattle raised in Japan, and just a small fraction of that is imported into the US. In the culinary world, Kobe Beef is considered one of the most precious and luxurious gourmet food items. Everyone has heard of Kobe Beef, though very few have experienced its light, thinly ribboned marbling, or experienced its umami-packed, delightful melt-in-your-mouth tender bites in search of a truly unforgettable meal.
The climate in this area is known for its relatively low temperatures in all of the seasons. This lends itself to making a very nature-rich area. Lots of fresh water, air and quality feed available to the ranchers, help make it a great area for high-quality beef. The cattle’s diet primarily consists of the lush pasture grass in the area and local straw.
You’ll find the kinds of cattle raised here include, the Holstein, Japanese Brown, Japanese Black, Japanese Shorthorn, Aberdeen Angus, and the Hereford.
The only region in the world you can get certified Kobe is from Hyogo and the only cattle that comes from is the Tajima strain. Out of those cattle, only a few are chosen to get the certification which comes from a set of criteria set by the Kobe Beef Marketing and Distribution Promotion Association.
From calves, the cattle are fed a combination of rice straw, barley, and maize – along with fresh water. These cows reach ideal quality and texture at a minimum age of 28 months and up to 32 months.
Carcasses are graded on the following criteria to be called Kobe:
- BMS needs to be a 6 or higher
- Gross carcass weight of no more than 476 kilograms
- Fine meat texture with excellent firmness