Arab News Japan
Premium meat supplier Country Hill International (CHI) and butcher shop Prime Gourmet based in Dubai, UAE celebrated the addition of Kobe beef to the company’s Japanese Wagyu product portfolio on Thursday, September 14, by hosting an event entitled “Art of Kobe.”
Country Hill International invited Japanese Master Butcher from SFoods, Marika Watanabe, to present an intricately conspicuous cutting show that involved trimming hunks of beef the size of a bed pillow while dressed in a traditional kimono.
The demonstration showcased the delicacy and art of Kobe Japanese Wagyu beef as Watanabe ornately taught the crowd of meat-lovers and meat-fancying professionals how to best extract the meat and other techniques to effectively prevent meat wastage. At the finale, one thing was clear: not all meat cuts are the same.
The demonstration was followed by a tasting focused on specific Kobe beef cuts. The menu was prepared and served by Executive Chef Mauro Di Leo, whoused CHI’s price point secondary cuts to create a menu of Kobe Nigiri, Kobe beef Kushiyaki, slow cooked smoked Kobe neck, Kobe Tartar and Kobe beef steak slices which provided guests with familiarity with the delicacy and flavour of the meat.
To many people in the UAE, the city of Kobe in Japan is synonymous with the most succulent and costly beef in the world, but with it’s increasing availability across the country, suppliers such as CHI want consumers to be aware of the proper classification of the authentic form of this ultrarich-beef.
CHI operates under three main pillars which are authenticity, traceability and sustainability. In offering full muscles from the animal, CHI makes a considerable effort through sales and training to educate and inspire customers to use more “secondary cuts” like Topside, Knuckle, Rump, and Chuck Roll, which is the sustainable practice commonly used in traditional Japanese cuisine. In addition to the sustainable benefits associated with this method, it enables CHI to offer beef cuts at a lower price. CHI are the go-to with Chefs in Dubai for their supply of Saroma Wagyu Beef, but the addition of Kobe Wagyu Beef cements CHIs position as the leading Wagyu supplier in the region, offering a ‘full basket’ for their customers.
CHI has become part of the Kobe Beef Marketing & Distribution Association, which makes them a certified importer of Kobe beef, with proof of authenticity of the beef in quality and traceability certificates of each cow distributed.
Kobe beef is a small subset of Japanese Wagyu that comes from the Tajima strain of cattle and produced only in the region around Kobe City in Japan’s Hyōgo prefecture. It is known for its extraordinary flavor and marbled texture, which is what distinguishes it from other Japanese Wagyu.
The widespread availability of Kobe beef signaled a need for correct identification between real and counterfeit products, indicating the significance of certified suppliers.
CHI are owned by the Gulf Japan Food Fund, and are a successful homegrown UAE business, with a strong connection to Japan. They’re close ties with Japanese based farms is world-class, unparalleled in the industry, testament of what happens when two worlds come together, in a carnivore city such as the UAE.