If you are an ardent meat lover, then you might have heard of the world’s most luxurious steak called Wagyu.
Originally from Japan, Wagyu beef steak has now become a global obsession where diners are willing to pay hefty amounts just to have the beef. Wagyu is becoming more popular globally and Kenya is also catching on the trend.
“Australian Wagyu is rising to become the world’s number one Wagyu outside of Japan. This is attributed to the cattle’s extensive grain feeding programme and the numerous tests that are done on the beef to make sure it is at a world-class level,” explains Chef Chris Wade, a steak expert, owner and executive chef at Steak Maestro in Australia.
Back in Kenya for the fourth time over the last 10 months, Chef Wade is trying to entice diners’ palates. From his visits to Nairobi, he saw the love Kenyans have for meat and decided to introduce the Australian Wagyu. Pop-up dinners have been his way of introducing this luxurious dish where the dinners are exclusive to those seeking to experience a new taste.
“Not only do I ship in the Wagyu, I also bring authentic Australian rubs, vegetables and spices to give diners an authentic experience,” he said at a pop-up dinner at Sierra Burger and Wine.
He also cooked the Wagyu beef for diners at Capital Club, Serena Hotel at Sh10,000 per person dinner.
“The price of the dinners is definitely shocking to most people but after they taste the Wagyu they understand why and they appreciate the delicacy,” he said.
Kenyan Chef, Allan Murungi has also been cross-breeding his cattle for six years now and from time to time, he also does Wagyu tasting diners for his high-paying clientele where they get to experience the Kenya-reared Wagyu beef.
From steaks to burger patties, he incorporates the meat in his menu—a move that has set him ahead in the meat and steak world.
Attaining a luxurious Wagyu beef requires a stringent programme that includes feeding the breed with its own grass for about a year and a half, and then moving it to a grain feeding programme.
Chef Wade has over 25 years experience with steaks. His restaurant and brand dubbed Steak Maestro is five years old.
“What started off as a proposal to cook at a restaurant in Mauritius turned out to be a showcase of Australia’s culinary scene that has now taken place in over 50 countries around the world,” he adds.
This luxurious venture, of course, has its challenges, the major one being, shipping the products into the country, the taxation costs and also booking the dinners at a fair price.
“While it may take some time before hotels can serve up Wagyu beef on their menus, the pop-up dinners are working well to get the word out there and I believe we will soon be supplying not only to hotels but to individuals as well for their private barbecues,” he said.