For many steak, roast, brisket, and burger lovers, the holy grail of meat is Wagyu. It's renowned for its marbling and flavor, making it one of the most sought-after types of beef. But why is the price of Wagyu higher than what you can buy from the grocery store or even your local butcher? And is buying wagyu beef worth the price tag? We're here to answer these questions and more as we explore why paying the price of Wagyu is an easily justified expense.
What Is Wagyu Beef?
First, let's look at what exactly wagyu beef is and why it commands such a large price tag. Wagyu, which translates to "Japanese cow," is a beef originating from Japan. It's most notable for its high marbling content, the intramuscular fat within the meat, giving it its buttery flavor and melt-in-your-mouth texture. To achieve this unique marbling and flavor, wagyu cattle are given special diets containing beer and massaged regularly. This helps to break down the muscles' fibers and increase their fat content.
What Is American Wagyu Beef?
American Wagyu beef comes from crossbreeding Japanese Wagyu cattle with American Angus cattle. This type of beef is known for its marbling, tenderness, and unique flavor that comes from taking the best aspects of Japanese Wagyu cattle and combining them with Angus cattle's renowned beefiness. The resulting beef has a higher percentage of meat than purebred Wagyu and still retains the excellent marbling characteristic of Wagyu beef.
Do You Know How Much a Wagyu Cow Is Worth?
The cost of a Wagyu cow is generally much higher than that of an American Angus cow. Purebred Wagyu cows can range from $4,000 to $10,000 or more, depending on various factors such as genetics, age, and overall quality and grade of Wagyu. In contrast, an American Angus cow's cost ranges from $1,500 to $4,000 or more, depending on the same factors. The vast chasm between the typical price of Wagyu and Angus is essential in understanding why you pay a premium for beef sourced from wagyu breeders and suppliers.
What is the Price of Wagyu Per Pound?
Premium A5 Wagyu beef, the highest grade of Wagyu beef from Japan, can be quite expensive, typically averaging $200 per pound or more, depending on various factors such as the specific cut, the source, and the demand.
The grading system for Wagyu beef in Japan is based on a combination of factors, including marbling, color, texture, and overall quality of the meat, with the highest grade being A5. Because A5 Wagyu beef is highly prized and rare, it is typically sold at a premium price and is often considered a luxury product.
Reasons Why Buying Wagyu Beef Is Worth the Expense
Higher Fat Content
Ask any chef, meat lover, or foodie, and they'll tell you the same thing: fat is flavor. Because Wagyu beef has elevated amounts of marbled fat, it produces a rich, buttery flavor and tender texture.
The unique texture of Wagyu beef is due to the high amount of unsaturated fatty acids, which gives it a distinct, melt-in-your-mouth feel. If you've never had a Wagyu steak, you'll be shocked at its tenderness.
While Wagyu beef is high in fat, it's also high in monounsaturated fats, which can help improve cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease. Wagyu beef is also packed with nutrients, including vitamins B6 and B12, zinc, and selenium. If you're looking to reintroduce beef into your diet while remaining health-conscious, Japanese or American Wagyu could be the most beneficial way to do so. And isn't it worth buying Wagyu beef if it improves your health and wellness?
Ethical Breeding Practices
Many Wagyu and American Wagyu beef producers take great care in raising their cattle, often providing ample space to roam and graze and using humane slaughter methods. Taking these steps increases the price of Wagyu compared to factory-farmed beef, which usually favors quantity over quality.
Wagyu beef is subject to rigorous quality control standards imposed by the Japanese government, ensuring that only the highest-quality cuts make it to market. While American Wagyu is less scrutinized, a reputable provider also holds their products to the highest standards.
The unique flavor and texture of Wagyu beef make it a versatile ingredient that can be used in a wide range of dishes. Want to add an unctuous layer of savoriness to pizza, pasta, chili, or anything else you use meat in? Just swap Wagyu for grocery store beef, and you'll instantly realize the price of Wagyu is justified.
Rarity and Exclusivity
Wagyu beef is still relatively rare outside of Japan, making it a sought-after delicacy that raises the price of Wagyu, and makes many consider it a luxury item. This added layer of exclusivity is similar to the luxury watch or car market. A $10 watch tells you time just like a $20,000 timepiece, and a family sedan moves on four wheels just the same as a high-performance Italian sports car. But that doesn't mean they're of the same quality. Paying a premium for premium products is just part of the buying wagyu beef experience.
Buying Wagyu Beef Online and Preparing It at Home Can Lowers Your Overall Costs
If you're craving a perfectly seared steak with just the right amount of salt and pepper to compliment the savory, beefy flavors but want to avoid paying the price of Wagyu at a steakhouse, we have good news for you. Good Silver Steak Co. offers a wide selection of American Wagyu beef, far exceeding USDA Prime beef in marbling and overall quality.
Buying Wagyu beef from us and preparing it at home provides significant cost savings compared to a night out at a steakhouse. What you choose to do with the savings is entirely up to you—but we recommend using it towards sensational sides, delectable desserts, or wonderful wines. All orders of $200+ come with free next-day shipping so that you can have a spur-of-the-moment romantic dinner with that special someone or wow a crowd at your next dinner party.