This is the real deal. D’Artagnan’s Japanese beef is from the famed Black Kuroge cattle that are revered in Japan for their quality meat. These cattle are raised by Japanese beef masters who adhere to traditional feeding protocols that produce beef with an international reputation.
Kuroge cattle, often deemed superior to the Tajima cattle used for Kobe beef, yield meat that has a fine, velvety texture and magnificent marbling. After cooking, the beef is not only very tender but has a characteristically sweet, mild flavor.
In addition to its fine breeding, this Wagyu beef has the highest possible ranking in the strict Japanese scoring system. A5 means the ultimate in excellence; beef scored for yield and quality, then within quality, specifics like: color and brightness, firmness and texture, color, luster, and quality of fat. Less than 3% of all the Wagyu produced in Japan scores that high.
There is nothing that can touch this beef for flavor and tenderness. You could say that it is the ultimate beef. For the home cook who has tried the best of everything, this Wagyu beef striploin sets a new bar.
Please read the tips tab for cooking recommendations. Wagyu beef this fine needs special care.
Just the facts
- Authentic, native-breed Japanese Kuroge cattle
- No antibiotics or hormones
- Graded by third-party auditor using BMS scoring system
- Grading Score: A5, BMS 12+ (Highest attainable value on the marbling scale)
- Ships in an uncooked state
- Product of Japan
- For best taste on fresh products, use or freeze within 3-5 days of receipt; for frozen products, use within 1-2 days after thawing
A network of farmers in southern Japan raise the Black Kuroge cattle to exacting specifications and take the concept of “small farm” to the extreme. Many raise only four Wagyu cattle at a time, which means the cattle receive a lot of attention and personalized care. These Japanese beef masters have developed protocols which, like many things in Japan, have been taken to the level of art.
The Black Kuroge cattle are humanely-raised for more than two years, on grass and then in the traditional Japanese fashion: on a proprietary diet devised by the individual farmers, with incremental amounts of barley, vegetables, greens, and silage. The diet builds on the breed’s natural propensity to exquisite and abundant marbling. The farmers provide a stress-free environment, and never use antibiotics, hormones or growth stimulants.
In order to protect cattle bloodlines, breeding is thoroughly controlled. All calves born from this process are affixed with an individual identification number and information like the date of birth, the bloodline of the parents, and place of birth.
All D’Artagnan Japanese beef is graded as “A5” the highest grading possible. Each piece of beef is scored for yield and quality, and then within quality, specifics like: color and brightness, firmness and texture, color, luster, and quality of fat.
Whatever you do, never overcook this Wagyu beef. Keep it rare, or you lose too much of the precious fat.
The serving size for Wagyu beef this rich is 3 - 4 ounces; think of it as the beef equivalent of foie gras. So you will not be enjoying a 24-ounce Wagyu steak. This piece of beef can serve 30 people; to serve only a few, cut off a 16-ounce steak.
Before cooking, allow the steak to come to room temperature, causing the fine network of fat to warm up. You will be searing it for such a short time that some of the fat might still be cold if you do not take this step.
Heat a cast iron skillet or grill to the highest possible level. The hottest you have ever heated a skillet would be almost hot enough. Season the steak simply with salt and pepper, in order to allow the extraordinary flavor to shine. Sear the Wagyu for a very short time on each side. Keep in mind that you can lose 20% of the weight while searing, much like foie gras.
Let it rest a moment (it’s still virtually raw inside, so not too long), and then cut into serving portions of 3 - 4 ounces each.
You could also cut a half-inch thick steak, and char the exterior of the beef with a torch, leaving the inside rare.
Many chefs cut A5 Wagyu into carpaccio and serve it raw. For the beef to be cut wafer thin requires that it be very cold before you slice it. Chefs often freeze it for a short time to ensure the desired carpaccio thinness.
If you are not serving the entire striploin at one dinner and want to store the rest of it, then cut it into several 16-ounce portions. You must vacuum seal – oxidation is the enemy of fat – and then freeze the steaks. Because there is so much fat, Wagyu will freeze nicely and be ready for another special occasion.