what’s the difference between wagyu beef and regular beef

Marbling: The Wagyu Difference

Wagyu fat melts at a lower temperature than any other cattle’s, resulting in a rich, buttery flavor unseen in other strains of beef. This fat is also unsaturated and high in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, meaning not only is Wagyu marbling more delicious, it’s also more healthy.

Wagyu steaks are becoming increasingly prevalent worldwide because of their well-known delicious flavor, which puts regular store-bought steak to shame.

However, many people don’t understand why wagyu steaks are so much better than their alternatives, which means that many can’t tell the difference between wagyu and regular steak.

So, what exactly is wagyu, and how does it differ from regular steak? We’ll give you all the details in this article!

The Terms Wagyu and Angus Refer to the Breed of Cattle

First things first, it’s important to understand that “Angus” and “Wagyu” are breeds of cattle. The Angus breed originated from Scotland and was brought to the U.S. in the 1870s. They have a rich heritage and are now the most popular breed in the country. Wagyu cattle originated in Japan and were first brought to the U.S. in 1975. “American Wagyu” beef is the result of crossbreeding Japanese Wagyu with high-quality continental breeds of cattle. They also must be born and raised within the U.S.

There are some differences between Angus and Wagyu beef when it comes to quality, grading, preparation, flavor, and more. This infographic beef breaks down the key differences and similarities:

Why Is Wagyu So Rare?

Wagyu beef, prized for its fine marbling and buttery texture, is held in high esteem worldwide. In the United States, its hard to find Wagyu on every menu or in any supermarket, even though we can personally attest to its delectability.

Thats not to say that Wagyu isnt rare, but it isnt in the traditional sense. Wagyu cattle can be raised and bred on a large scale with reasonable consistency, so how is it rare?

A few explanations for why Wagyu beef is a specialty that is hard to come by in the United States:

Different breeds produce different types of meat

Each breed of cattle offers a unique set of attributes that contribute to an equally unique eating experience sure to please your taste buds.

What is Natural Angus Beef?

The Angus breed is known for producing meat that is tender, juicy, flavorful, and exceptional in marbling. A more commonly known breed, Angus cattle are graded on the USDA grading scale and the majority receive a designation of Prime or Choice.

How does “Natural” fit in? Natural simply means that the beef cannot have artificial ingredients and must be minimally processed. Many producers exceed the USDA’s definition by raising cattle without the use of antibiotics or added growth hormones. Angus beef offers a consistent and unprecedented flavor for an eating experience you’ll want to put on repeat.

Photo Cred: National Beef

What is American Wagyu Beef?

Often referred to as a delicacy, production methods of Wagyu result in tiny flakes of marbling throughout all retail cuts creating a juicy, delicate beef flavor with a velvety texture. Due to its intense marbling, Wagyu beef is graded on the Japanese BMS (Beef Marbling Standards) because the USDA grading scale does not offer a designation to adequately capture marbling score. Most American Wagyu beef also carries the “Natural” label as it’s raised without the use of added growth hormones. Ultimately, American Wagyu offers a unique eating experience steeped in intense flavor and tenderness.

Marbling: The Wagyu Difference Wagyu fat melts at a lower temperature than any other cattle’s, resulting in a rich, buttery flavor unseen in other strains of beef. This fat is also unsaturated and high in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, meaning not only is Wagyu marbling more delicious, it’s also more healthy.

FAQ

Is Wagyu better than normal beef?

Wagyu beef has gained global recognition for its extraordinary flavor and texture, largely owing to its rich marbling and superior genetics. Originating from Japan, Wagyu has higher levels of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, and a notable concentration of B12, contributing to overall energy levels.

What’s special about Wagyu beef?

Authentic Wagyu beef is among the most sought-after and luxurious meats in the world. What makes it so special is its copious marbling, which creates a luxurious, buttery tenderness unlike any steak from cattle raised in America.

Is Wagyu beef from a normal cow?

Wagyu – a Japanese beef cattle breed – derived from native Asian cattle. ‘Wagyu’ refers to all Japanese beef cattle, where ‘Wa’ means Japanese and ‘gyu’ means cow. Wagyu were originally draft animals used in agriculture, and were selected for their physical endurance.

Why is Wagyu beef so expensive?

Wagyu beef comes from Japan. Because of that, if you want it in America, it needs to be imported. There’s an import quota in the United States, and once that quota has been met, a high import tax is added to all future imports. That means that the beef has to be priced higher as a result.

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