Muneharu Ozaki’s Wagyu cows are the only Japanese cattle that can carry the name of their breeder as a brand label. They receive a special feed and spend even more time on the pastures than other Japanese breeds.
The intramuscular fat of original Japanese Ozaki beef melts at temperatures as low as 25° C, giving the meat almost creamy texture. It releases the fifth taste, umami, which makes for an incomparable culinary sensation.
What is special about Ozaki beef?
Muneharu Ozaki has been breeding Wagyu cattle for more than 30 years. Out of those, he spent 16 years breeding Miyazaki cows; Ozaki cows have existed for the past 14 years only. Mr Ozaki feeds his cattle brewers’ grain silage and a mixture of algae and seaweed to stimulate blood circulation. He also mixes powdered charcoal into his animals’ feed to absorb excess bacteria introduced by the grain-based feed.
Ozaki waits until his cows are 32–40 months old before slaughtering them – up to eight months later than his colleagues who breed Kobe cattle. This gives the animals extra time to develop the perfect marbling: the longer a Wagyu lives, the more intricately the fat veins branch through its meat. The result: incredibly tender meat with an indescribable flavour.
Japanese Ozaki beef must be prepared immediately after it is taken out of the refrigerator. The fat in this type of meat starts melting at room temperature. Cook the meat rare (at most) to preserve its pure, full flavour. Traditional Japanese methods of preparing Wagyu beef include sukiyaki, shabu shabu and yakiniku.