Eating Kobe beef was a must try for me in Japan. My second favourite meat (after chicken) is beef.
To get to Kobe from Kyoto you have to go through Osaka. Lina was in Osaka, so we decided to meet at the station for breakfast.
After a delicious meal, it was off to Kobe!
Of course Kobe beef isn’t cheap. Only 4000 cows are slaughtered every year. Most of the meat is for Japanese consumption, so the most cost-effective place to eat it is at the source!
We decided on eating lunch because dinner is almost triple the price. I was only there for the beef, so I didn’t want to pay more for the same cut of meat.
On the way, Alvin came into the picture. Google said that Steakland was a good place for Kobe beef, but when we asked Alvin for directions to Steakland he pointed us in the direction of higher grade steak.
At first, I was skeptical. I was sure that he was part of some tourist trap operation to get us to spend more on a select few restaurants. He was part of the Kobe Beef Association.
Is the Kobe Beef Association Legit?
That’s what I googled and from what I could gather they are a legitimate association that tracks the lineage of the beef the restaurants serve.
Japanese people are overall honest people. This country isn’t like some countries that you go to and people think that because you are from Canada they can scam you out of money. You know the places I am talking about.
Just to be sure (and report back to you, the reader) I tried the recommended restaurant and Peter tried Steakland. We wanted to compare and contrast.
Anyhow, Alvin directed us to a slightly off the beaten path restaurant.
It was a small, traditional looking restaurant with limited (5 or 7) seating. The chef looked super legit. You could pick your cut and size of beef. I chose the middle size.
The chef prepared the meal right in front of me and it was a great experience.
The meal was about the same price as a Steakland meal. It came with rice, salad, miso soup, and of course, beef.
I have to say it was delicious! Every bite was heavenly. The steak melted in my mouth and the salad was fresh. Oh and the miso soup. Best. Ever.
The meal came with a certificate and a tracking number so I could tell the parents and grandparents of the cow the cut of beef came from. Is it copasetic? I don’t know, but I trust Alvin, the chef seemed to take his craft seriously and the tracking system on the website worked. Seems like a lot of work for a scam. So my verdict is that yes
The Kobe Beef Association is legit. Not a scam.
Is Steakland In Kobe, Japan good?
I didn’t have a full meal here, but compared to where I ate, Steakland gets a 3.5 to 4 stars out of 5. The place was nice, but I feel like my beef was much better. Peter ate here and he admitted that my beef was superior to his. I didn’t try any of his because I wanted to relish in the feeling of my excellent meal. I also didn’t want my pallet to be sullied by inferior beef of Steakland. HAHA.
Not to take away from Steakland. Peter said it was good, just not as good as where we were first.
Conclusion: If you are in Kobe, ask for Alvin! He is so kind and outgoing (a rarity in Japan – the outgoing part, not the kind part).