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I have to say, if I was on death row and I had to decide one meal, this meal that we just had would probably be it
Good afternoon guys, welcome back to Journey Across Japan; Never-ending adventure of... Wander
Today we're in the vibrant port town of Kobe (神戸市), before I get back on my bike and carry on cycling across Japan to Kagoshima (鹿児島市)
We thought we'd come here, hang out and enjoy some rather delicious food
Which you could probably know what it is, because you've seen the title of the video but joining me as we eat this delicious food
Is my third guest of the trip and it's his last day joining us is Pete Donaldson
Hello, everyone, welcome to the part of Kobe (神戸市) opened to foreign visitors and foreign trade in 1858
How do you know that?
It was on the wall in Starbucks
Is that how you get all your knowledge? Off the walls of Starbucks
Yep
So Pete and I do a podcast, the Abroad In Japan Podcast, it's the original name
Subscribe, download!
Subscribe, this is great, it is in the link below
And back in March, Pete was interviewing Bryan Cranston on his radio show and I said to Pete; 'If you can get Bryan Cranston
to shout out the Abroad In Japan Podcast, I will literally buy you Kobe beef very expensive meal
I didn't think it was gonna happen but he pulled it off look
Hi, I am Bryan Cranston and you're listening to Abroad In Japan
And now we've got to do it, now I've actually gotta get him Kobe beef, so it's about 4 pm, we're about to drop into a restaurant
We're about to eat the most decadent juiciest beef in the whole world
You said I was the juiciest beef in the whole wide world
The moment you set foot in a teppanyaki grill restaurant serving Kobe beef
You're struck by the rich, sweet scent of the marbled fat streaking through the meat
That makes wagyu so iconic, whilst Wagyu simply means Japanese beef, within Japan, many regions have their own cuts
Such as Matsusakagyu, which is typically the most expensive and Miyazakigyu, which has won the most awards domestically in recent years
But it's Kobe beef that remains the most famous internationally, often confused with the word Wagyu itself
All Kobe beef is sourced from Tajima cattle, born raised and slaughtered in Hyōgo Prefecture (兵庫県) of which there are only a few thousand
And even then, only the finest cuts are graded and sold as A5 Kobe beef
Just asked how much that piece of meat would cost and he says; 'Basically same as a car'
Car priced beef chunk
You can probably run a car on the oil that's in there, to be fair
I love how quietly you're talking, as if we're in a library
I'm giving the beef the respect it deserves
Good beef deserves whispering, it's like a library of me
O, cheers to Bryan Cranston
What does they A5 mean?
A5 is the highest rank of Wagyu beef, you often see A5 wagyu beef right, wherever you go
So it's not the size of it, like printer paper?
It's not like printer paper no, it's better than printer paper, to be A5, the beef is ranked on four criteria
There's the marveling intensity, so how much fat is streaking throughout beef?
Yeah
The color of the fat as well, the color of the muscle tissue itself
Aka the meat, the little bit of meat that's in between the fat and the shape of the muscle
As well, aahh
I definitely didn't read that off my phone
I'm a expert
When cooking Kobe beef, some of the fat is trimmed and used to lubricate the grill
So no butter or oils necessary, which could intrude on the pure flavor of the beef
The aim is to sear the steak, just warming and melting the fats within
But not truly cooking them, a delicate process given the low melting point of the fat at just 26 degrees Celsius
In fact, if you cut off a slice of the fat and touch it, you can feel it start to melt, with the texture more reminiscent of ice cream
Next it's seasoned with salt and pepper
And periodically rested for typically twice the length of time that it's been cooked, giving it the perfect medium to rare finish
Watching this culinary art form unfold before you is tantamount to torture, but the reward is certainly worth the wait
I think the chef must have the weakest hands in the entirety of the cheffing world, yeah, cause if you don't need to
The weakest hands?
Yeah, 'cause you don't need to cut that using any kind of pressure on
You could talk that meat apart, that's how soft it looks, there's no pressure there, it's wonderful
There's a variety of ways you can enjoy the beef
There's salt, there's pepper and mustard and soy sauce and there's ponzu (ポン酢) which is like soy sauce with vinegar
They recommend that you have to beef with salt, so you just dab into the salt
And it's actually quite a thick chunk of beef, surprisingly thick
Oh my god, the moment you put it in your mouth, you can feel your tongue saliva
You can feel your whole mouth erupted, the moment this goes on your tongue
You feel your mouth started to water.
If you don't like watching TV programs, where like fat westerners eat like amazing food and go; 'O, it's heaven'
But I think I may have gone blind, 'cause that's how good this is
It is so good
A sort of spice goes straight through, even if you just flavour it slightly with a bit of salt, maybe a little bit of mustard
It's incredible, thanks, Chris and thanks, Bryan Cranston
I have to say, if I was on death row and I had to decide one meal, this meal that we just had would probably be it
Thing with wagyu, thing with kobe beef is for 250 grams
It's kind of just the perfect amount, because it is very buttery, it's very rich
I think if you have more, it might be a little bit overwhelming on your stomach
Yeah, you'd be slamming antacid until next Tuesday to be honest
Slamming antacids, another potential name for your indie rock band
Another thing I really like about going out for steak, Teppanyaki
There's a sort of theatrical quality to it, I'm watching the chef cook the meal
He's half the fun of coming out for teppanyaki, it's half the fun of coming out for Wagyu beef so
I don't even want to eat my beef, because I just don't want it to end, you know unlike Call of Duty
You have your last hand grenade, I'm gonna hold it back, you want to keep it in reserved
That's how I feel about this beef, I don't want to use it, I want to look at it
I want to admire it, I want to know that I'm gonna eat it, but not eat it, I don't want it to end
Imagine if you're like minted, I presume like an emperor or something
Minted like an emperor
When you came down here in your big
Emperor's car and have this everyday?
Everyday
Dead within a week
You would be dead within a week, the cholesterol would be off the charts
Yeah, but at the mortuary everyone be like that looks like a happy corpse
Well Pete the heavenly dinner is almost over
How do you feel?
Uhm
It just kept coming, Chris, it was relentless, it was a beef assault, but it was just incredible some of the best food
I think I've ever eaten in my entire life
It also goes really well with red wine, doesn't it?
Yeah, that's classic beef stabilizer, a bit of red wine, a little bit tart, a little bit brackish
What are these other words I've never heard of brackish, what is brackish? Is that even a word?
I traveled with three guests on this trip so far, I've had
Joey from Australia, Sharla from Canada and Pete from the UK, interesting fact
I've understood Sharla and Joey more than I have Pete, he's from North northern UK
North northern UK
North northen UK, but I don't, I don't know what he's saying most of the time
I just sort of nodding along and go, Yeah
Yeah, that word you said
But if you could summarize this meal, this decadent meal in two words, Mr. Donaldson
What would those two words be?
If you plan to visit a teppanyaki restaurant for Kobe beef, it's very important to do your homework
As there have been instances of restaurants taking advantage of tourists, some restaurants claim to sell Kobe beef
When actually they're just selling beef in Kobe (神戸市)
Other restaurants sell low-quality cuts of Kobe beef that don't make A5 grade
If you are gonna try Kobe beef don't walk into a restaurant on a whim off the street
Do you research carefully online or ask around to make sure you enjoy the real thing, after all there's no doubt
It is one of the most incredible dining experiences you're likely to have in Japan
If you're wondering how much this meal cost, guys
It's 250 grams of Kobe beef and it came in about ¥15,000 or $150
So it is pricey, it is a once in a year annual meal
At best, but fortunately this time, though I did say I was paying for Pete for the Bryan Cranston shoutout
It's actually Tokyo Creative, my agency who have been supporting me through this cycle, so big thank you to Tokyo Creative for
Buying us a wonderful meal and making it look like I paid for it, but I didn't
Well, Chris treated me to a $300 meal, so I thought I'd treat him to a ¥100, $1 coolish ice cream
It's quite good, I'm not gonna lie
It's not a bad finish, it really just put the icing on the cake, so to speak
Well we've had a lot of fun together, we've seen the monkeys of Kyoto (京都市)
We've explored the neon-lit streets of Osaka (大阪市) and now we've eaten a mountain of beef, but for now, that's all
That's it
Alright, I'm off
Goodbye Mr. Pete Donaldson, safe travels back to the UK
I don't know how I get home
You'll find out, Google Maps, mate, Google Maps, right?
We'll be back tomorrow, guys
Where I'll be carrying on the journey to Himeji Castle (姫路城) and ultimately on to Kagoshima (鹿児島市) for the next leg of our Journey Across Japan
But for now, no matter where you might be watching from, out there in the big wide world
Thanks for being a part of Journey Across Japan today, guys
And I will see you right back here tomorrow, to do it all over again
There is a storm coming
But when he gets here
There is no escaping him
Well at least for two or three days
Good morning, everyone and now I'm joining the tour