The selection of A5 snow beef kushiyaki served at Gozu restaurant where one of the specialties is Wagyu beef in San Francisco, Calif., on Wednesday, December 18, 2019. (Photo By Carlos Avila Gonzalez/The San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images)
Why Using Wagyu In Burgers Makes Chefs And Butchers Cringe
By Haldan Kirsch
The heavily prevalent amount of fine marbling in a wagyu steak is one reason why it's hard to mistake it for another steak, and what gives it an incredible amount of tenderness and juiciness. This is why experienced butcher Walter Apfelbaum says that grinding good wagyu into a burger patty is the number one mistake you can make.
According to Apfelbaum, the process of grinding the meat breaks down the muscles and fat too much, and in the process, you destroy the delicious texture for which wagyu is prized. Apfelbaum insists that wagyu should be enjoyed as a solid piece of meat and the only time wagyu should be turned into a burger is when you trim off the extra meat to shape your steak.
Restaurant Business points out that if you're seeing wagyu burgers on a menu, it's probably not what you think either. Most of the time it's going to be made with a mix of lower-quality American wagyu with standard ground beef instead of a highly sought-after Kobe steak.