Wagyu has gained quite the reputation among restaurants, chefs, and consumers. This highly sought after beef has increased in popularity worldwide due to its unique flavor, texture, and marbling. So which type of Wagyu is most suitable for your palate?
What Is American Wagyu Beef?
American Wagyu beef is produced by crossbreeding cattle, usually a full blood Wagyu with Angus; the result is a pleasant balance of tenderness, texture, and flavor. Producers aim to feed their cattle over 400 days on a special vegetarian diet, a technique very different than domestic beef in the United States. This creates Wagyu beef with the world-renowned marbling and tenderness of Japanese Wagyu, and the robust taste and texture similar to American domestic beef.
American Wagyu vs. Japanese Wagyu
American Wagyu cattle are fed for 400+ days, while Japanese Wagyu cattle are fed for 650+ days. Although closely held secret, Japanese Wagyu diet consists of barley, wheat bran, rice bran, corn, and other quality feed. Alternatively, American Wagyu diet consists mostly of corn and wheat depending on proximity to their local crop source.
American Wagyu is commonly utilized for grilling, roasting, and pan searing. The fat content is typically lower than Japanese Wagyu due to less marbling and this creates a hearty, beefy flavor many find very palatable when included in well-known dishes.
Japanese Wagyu creates a very different experience; a very tender, rich flavor coats your mouth, making it perfect for incorporating into dishes like shabu shabu, yakiniku, and stir fry.The taste tends to be decadent and butter-like, creating a very exquisite eating experience.
Although taste and texture varies significantly between American and Japanese Wagyu, both will elevate ordinary dishes to create eating experiences your friends and family will remember.