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Old 04-13-2012, 02:37 PM   #1
Potemkin
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Default The Great Kobe Beef Lie

http://www.aphis.usda.gov/newsroom/c..._beef_vs.shtml



http://www.forbes.com/sites/larryolm...kobe-beef-lie/

Food's Biggest Scam: The Great Kobe Beef Lie
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These are cuts of the famous Kobe beef from Hyogo prefecture in Japan. Note the exquisite marbling of fat throughout. To see it in person, you need to go to Japan, because real Kobe beef cannot be found in the U.S. Photo: Wikipedia

Think you’ve tasted the famous Japanese Kobe beef?

Think again.

Of course, there are a small number of you out there who have tried it – I did, in Tokyo, and it is delicious. If you ever go to Japan I heartily recommend you splurge, because while it is expensive, it is unique, and you cannot get it in the United States. Not as steaks, not as burgers, certainly not as the ubiquitous “Kobe sliders” at your trendy neighborhood “bistro.”

That’s right. You heard me. I did not misspeak. I am not confused like most of the American food media.

I will state this as clearly as possible:

You cannot buy Japanese Kobe beef in this country. Not in stores, not by mail, and certainly not in restaurants. No matter how much you have spent, how fancy a steakhouse you went to, or which of the many celebrity chefs who regularly feature “Kobe beef” on their menus you believed, you were duped. I’m really sorry to have to be the one telling you this, but no matter how much you would like to believe you have tasted it, if it wasn’t in Asia you almost certainly have never had Japan’s famous Kobe beef.
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Old 04-13-2012, 02:39 PM   #2
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The 'Kobe' beef in America is not the real deal, but it is still significantly better than your average American beef.
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Old 04-13-2012, 02:39 PM   #3
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http://www.forbes.com/sites/larryolm...nd-wagyu-beef/

Food's Biggest Scam, Part 2: "Domestic" Kobe And Wagyu Beef

Yesterday in this column I started to explain the biggest fraud in the American culinary scene: that there is no authentic Japanese Kobe beef sold in this country, anyplace. Not one slice of it. What is heavily marketed as Kobe beef on menus, in stores, and by mail order is at best an imitation of Japanese beef, and at worst has no relationship whatsoever to the genuine article.

Mine is a rather straightforward proposition – U.S. law bans the import of all Japanese beef. It’s hard to argue with that. But imitation Japanese beef is a much murkier issue.

What about “Domestic Kobe” or Wagyu? Savvy eaters may have noticed that in recent years some menus and meat packaging have switched to these terms. I’ve also seen “American-style Kobe” and “American Wagyu” (I’ve even seen Kobe pork, Kobe bacon and Kobe pigs-in-a-blanket!). I’m not sure if these are attempts to be slightly less dishonest, but if so, they fall far short, since none of these terms mean anything to the buyer.

Restaurants in Dubai are full of live Maine lobsters, flown halfway around the world on ice at great expense to offer diners one of the best expressions of the crustacean. Customers happily pay over $100 to try the famous Maine lobster. But what if those lobsters were a different species, from the Persian Gulf, labeled “domestic Maine lobsters?” Or “UAE Maine lobsters?” That would be a total rip-off. Fortunately the restaurateurs in Dubai are not nearly as unscrupulous as those here in the States, where this kind of high-priced bait and switch is pulled off thousands of times each day with domestic Kobe – excuse me – Faux-be beef.
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Old 04-13-2012, 02:58 PM   #4
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This Larry Olmstead guy has a real hardon to go after American Kobe beef. I will continue to go to the Issaquah Brewhouse and eat their awesome American Kobe beef burgers, and do the same at Gaylord's Resort when I am in Dallas. I care about taste, not about journalists and their need to sell copy by turning a molehill into a mountain.

Also, Olmstead fails to note that real Japanese Kobe beef is hideously expensive, while the American version is much less so. He also fails to note that American Kobe beef is from the same Weygu breed of cattle, and raised using most of the same methods used in Kobe, Japan. He uses false analogies to try and imply that American Kobe beef is no different than regular beef, which is why I find his article to be deeply dishonest. I am sure if you looked hard enough, you could find some total ripoffs in restaurants where they are not even using Weygu cattle raised by the Kobe method at all, but there are restaurant ripoffs to be found in every nation. Olmstead is trying to portray all American Kobe beef as that, and that makes him nothing more than a cheap liar in my book. He is damaging a legitimate industry and harming American businesses in an effort to improve his journalistic standing at the expense of the truth. What a sleazebag.

I think there is a big lawsuit in Olmstead's future, courtesy of American Kobe beef producers. I hope they take him for everything he is worth.
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Old 04-13-2012, 03:10 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ought Six View Post
This Larry Olmstead guy has a real hardon to go after American Kobe beef. I will continue to go to the Issaquah Brewhouse and eat their awesome American Kobe beef burgers, and do the same at Gaylord's Resort when I am in Dallas. I care about taste, not about journalists and their need to sell copy by turning a molehill into a mountain.
He does make a good point thought about the use of the name.

If someone in the Middle East used the term "local Main lobster" or some Texan sold Hill country wine as "local California wine" there would be a sh*tstorm.

If it is good beef but raised locally or at least in the US then why try to get glamor ripping off some name?
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Old 04-13-2012, 03:36 PM   #6
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That is precisely the false analogy I was talking about. A local lobster would not be Maine lobster, or more specifically, a Homarus americanus. American 'Kobe' beef, on the other hand, is Weygu beef raised by the Kobe method, just like real Kobe beef. Olmstead's analogy is false for this reason. One can argue that the Japanese do it better, and the quality of their product is better. If Texas ranchers that produce the stuff were just calling it 'Kobe beef', that could be a valid point. But that is not what they do. They call it 'American Kobe beef', which draws a perfectly clear distinction between their product and the Japanese one.

Do we see Olmstead freaking out because California wineries produce Burgundy wines not grown in the Burgundy region of France? And these evil vintners do not even call it 'American Burgundy'! Oh, the horror! And Parmesan cheese not from Parma, Italy? OMFG !!! Belgian beers not brewed in Belgium? Call the FBI! Of course, if Olmstead tried that, he would be laughed at as a complete asshat. He should be laughed at as a complete asshat for his two columns above for the same reason. Then he should be sued.
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* The only usable tools for these tasks are guns, and thus I have the right to shoot anyone who would take my guns from me.
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