A5 Wagyu..and from Costco?


I was shocked at the price of a top notch restaurant in Tokyo when we visited there in 1987.
Am so glad that prices here in the US much more reasonable.
Costco is my number one store for everything as long as they carry it.


Here’s one idea. :wink:

We had the rare luxury of a two burner kitchenette during a recent stay in Tokyo. We took full advantage and dream walked through several glorious shopping trips to the local supermarket to load up. Per usual, this store was stocked with beautifully packaged groceries, a dazzling variety of perfect produce, and a heart stopping meat emporium. The cheapest cuts on display rivaled the best available back home.

For one meal, we bought a wonderfully marbled slab of beef for approximately USD$15. Couldn’t resist the great looking asparagus and scallions. Didn’t buy any oil or seasoning. The market provided complimentary pieces of fat, which we used as grease and seasoning. Borrowed a bit of the powdered seasoning from the dry ramen packet, and ready to chef. Results were pretty good for a MacGyver effort.

Sashimi appetizer:

Main course:

Ramen, of course.


I don’t think I’ll crave A5 that often, but I would be happy to order from Costco again if a great friend or family loved steak and this could be a treat for a special occasion. I do have some curiosity to try a steak from one of these high-end places to see if it’s that different from Costco, but it’s not a pressing curiosity. It would be a good $250 for ONE steak when shipping is factored in. I don’t know if I enjoyed A5 enough for that.

I do love Costco, and maybe another time I could try their A4 wagyu and see if it’s that different. It was a good $100 cheaper.

And boy, that was atrocious math on my part. 4-1=3 steaks left. :weary:


Now I’m hungry.


We ate at Mouriya Honten, a teppanyaki steakhouse in Kobe and thought the prices much more reasonable than anticipated. Wife and I shared two “course” dinners. The ~ USD$150 Prime Kobe FIllet A5 130gr and the ~ USD$67 Sirloin Fillet A4 170gr.

We wanted to see if see if we may discern a major difference between the two cuts/grades (and save a couple of yen in the process). Both steaks were mouthwatering delicious and tender. Frankly, we could not discern a major difference between the two. Perhaps with some more experience and research…

The attached menu from two years ago, so prices should not have changed much. I was expecting a genuine Kobe beef dinner in Kobe City to be wallet busting, but was quite happy with the experience and affordability.

(Retired !) #26

Gotta be honest with you, really fatty beef is not my thing whether Japanese or otherwise.

I actually prefer grass fed which is usually ungraded because it does not have the marbling.

It’s leaner so it’s better for you, it’s better for the planet because it uses less resources, it’s healthier for the cow because they are designed to eat grass not grain, but finally, to me it tastes better because it tastes like beef not fat.

Maybe you should give a good grass fed steak a try and see what you think.


I’ve had grass fed steak too. Took a bit for me to get used to the beefy-ness, but I also prefer grass fed beef for all the other reasons. Grass fed is by far my go to type of beef for anything. A5/ specialty steaks is really just an occasional indulgence. I find them quite eating experiences because the taste and texture is totally different. If I ever crave a steak or burger, I probably wouldn’t feel the need to go for wagyu. With that being said, I don’t see why anyone would shell out for a Kobe or wagyu burger.

(For the Horde!) #28

Have you tried to slice it very thin and eat it raw to try?


Wait did I read that correctly? That steak was 15 dollars? Forgive me if I didn’t see that right.

That is the best “hotel” meal I think I’ve ever seen


I had to double check myself. That was 1,500 yen, at today’s rate = USD$13.70, for 102 grams. This was one of the cheaper cuts on the shelf, but more than adequate for my basic no frills stir-fry.

The Japan supermarkets are incredible, and it was a real treat to be able to buy raw ingredients and experiment in the comfort of our own room. Booze much cheaper too (room vs restaurant).

The higher end cuts have tracking numbers listed, you can go to a website and confirm the lineage of your dinner. If you are into that sort of thing.

No need to make a trip to a high end store, good beef literally all over. Some beef we saw displayed in street markets:

I like my beef black and blue. When our wonderful waitress (who spoke no English) at the Shibuya izakaya saw me “overcooking” my Kobe (I swear I had the meat on the grill for less than 15 seconds per side), she relieved me of my cooking duties and cooked the remaining pieces for us. Embarrassing, felt like a total gaijin!! :slight_smile:


I didn’t. I don’t love beef tartar, so wasn’t really interested. I read all sorts of contradicting opinions on how to handle the wagyu over the web. One of the sites noted that A5 wagyu wasn’t good to eat raw because of all the fat - that the heat was needed to make sure the fat was softened for it to have that pleasant buttery texture. I don’t know how accurate that is, especially giving all the varying opinions on cooking it that I found, but I’ll let someone else experiment with that!


Just got this from Crowd Cow.


Wowzers! How do you plan to cook that beautiful cut?




Just be careful, it does not take too much heat too cook this.


I’ve been reading some. Crowd Cow has some ideas. Sounds like small portions are the way to go. I like this idea, from an earlier post.

"The Teppan restaurant most familiar to Americans is Benihana.

To replicate at home you should slice the beef into 1 cm thick pieces and bring to room temperature. Season with only a little sea salt. Use an extremely hot carbon steel or cast iron pan and cook for 90 seconds a side. Let it rest 5-10 minutes, slice thinly and enjoy with a good soy sauce (I like Yamasa) for dipping.

It will be pretty rare and that’s the point. You want to taste all the delicious fat, which has an unctious feel on the tongue and significant Umami flavor."


I think @Google_Gourmet can help. He has posted some amazing wagyu pics. In my eyes it doesn’t need much…just some salt and don’t over cook it, but everyone has different opinions. To me, you want the fat flavor to shine. That’s what this steak is about :slight_smile: you’re living large!

(saregama) #38

What a treat, @shrinkrap! Enjoy!

An alternative is to thinly slice the wagyu first (while raw/frozen) and then barely cook each slice as you eat (it helps to have an electric skillet for that; or think of the “hot stone” setups restaurants have - maybe a cast iron pan would hold heat similarly).

Doesn’t need much more than salt, plain soy might be too strong.


Am living large, and GETTING large!
Cooking as I eat would be appropriately indulgent!
I was thinking soy sauce might be too much.

(Junior) #40

I agree with everything you said. When I purchased my first one I cooked it more like a conventional steak, in a cast iron pan 5 mins each side.

Not only did I over cook it but eating it “whole” instead of small slices made the richness of the steak a bit overwhelming. It was a waste of $100.!!

I recently tried “American Wagyu” from my local shop rite and I enjoyed that much more.