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$3,000 Kobe Beef Steak Anyone?

How much would you pay for a perfect steak? A lot of it's kobe beef from Japan.

Wagyu beef at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/15/2016. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat

We’re not usually ones to brag about schwanky dinners we’ve crashed, but a recent winemaker dinner at Chef Dustin Valette’s Healdsburg restaurant, Valette, featured one of the most expensive cuts of meat we’ve ever laid eyes on.

A few pounds of the top-grade Japanese Kobe beef Valette served in small slices to the attendees cost about as much as a round-trip ticket to Tokyo and caused a few tears when pictures of the perfectly marbled meat appeared on Instagram. Now, if you’re not familiar with Kobe, it’s highly sought-after beef from Wagyu cattle raised exclusively in Hyogo Prefecture sometimes fed on Japanese beer and massaged for hours with sake. We have no idea if the cow we were eating lived the good life, but let’s just say it wasn’t missing any meals. (Point of clarification: The entire cut of beef, which was several pounds, was $3K, not a single serving.)

Why we mention this bit of luxury isn’t to brag (okay, maybe a humble brag). But it’s also reaffirm that every once in a while it’s worth experiencing food that isn’t just sustenance, but sublime — even if its just a perfect peach at the market or a warm croissant from the bakery.

That is what eating is truly about.

More Pix from the dinner (because I know you want to see ’em)

A winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
Spring peas and lobster at a winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
Quail and red polenta at a winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
Quail and red polenta at a winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
A winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
A winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
A winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
A winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
Foier gras and red pepepr gelee at a winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
Foier gras and red pepepr gelee at a winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
Dark chocolate dessert at a winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
Dark chocolate dessert at a winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
Duck and 64 degree egg at a winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat
Duck and 64 degree egg at a winemaker dinner at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg on 5/6/16. Heather Irwin, Press Democrat

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Comments

31 thoughts on “$3,000 Kobe Beef Steak Anyone?

  1. Hopefully it was a virgin at that price…

    kidding aside, Friday we had great steaks at the Sheraton in Petaluma…

  2. No wonder it’s called the BITE club, stories like this and ones about the insufferable clown Fieri really bite.

    1. Hey man…I’ll take stories about Kobe beef over stories about Ferry ANY day of the week! Hell…I’ll take stories about amoebic dysentery over stories about that no talent d-bag any day of the week!!!

  3. Oh, how precious! Thank you Dustin for enlightening the bumpkins of Sonoma County with your culinary sophistication. Tres formidable!

    1. The headline implies each serving is 3 grand. Shame on you Heather, you clearly knew it was not the case.

      1. Everyone knows that I have no shame and wagging fingers at me is like poking a bear. Kinda like a snuggly Winnie the Pooh bear, but still. Beware.

        That said, I don’t always write the headlines or subheads for my stories on the Press Democrat. Those frequently come from other folks who spice up the headlines. I did write the blog headline, which I felt made sense if you actually read the story. The point wasn’t to misinform, but to entertain with a bit of “Can you believe that, Harold?” information about a really unique dinner. Dustin pointed the confusion out to me a couple days ago, so mainly I’m sorry if its causing him any grief. But i doubt it. Everyone loves Dustin. 😉

  4. You have a missing apostrophe in the last long paragraph. Regardless, it’s ( < it's) a good article.

      1. she’s actually missing an entire word in the last paragraph and the aforementioned apostrophe. she needs a “to” between “also” and “reaffirm”

  5. So gross and disgusting~ selling dead animal flesh, outraheously expensive. And foie gras?? Hey this is the 21st century, where most of us with any intelligence have come to know and feel how utterly unnecessary it is to murder and torture animals, just cause you think you “need the protein”. This menu is so out of touch, out of date, it’s shameful. People are far more beautiful, and stay far more healthy, when they’ve gotten off the endless cycle of eating dead animal flesh.

    1. It’s purely because it tastes amazing. I am fully aware I can get protein from other sources. So now that you’re done telling us you’re vegan why don’t you tell us about how much cross fit you do or how you’re voting for Bernie Sanders. Cookie cutter hipsters make my day.

      1. LOL! Awesome. And I’m not sure about the “torture” part either…since this article was about Wagyu in particular, she should know those cows live better lives than 90% of the people in Japan.

    2. Quite correct. I far prefer eating mine while still alive. Deep fried live fish is lovely and the flesh is so tasty as you take it apart. Yum. Live animal food rocks!

    3. I really find it interesting that a veggitarian like this person has nothing better to do than come here and bash meat eaters and has no concept of how Kobe cows are breed and treated. I’m all for free speech, but I would say veggitarian like Laura should mind their own business and leave the meat eaters alone and stop with the bashing and sharing of their opinion. We are going to continue to eat what we want to eat. Don’t get us wrong, meat eaters love animals…..they taste delicious.

    4. Laura:

      How about taking your vegan shaming and self-righteousness off of high-beam for just a moment to examine a few facts:

      FACT: Humans are omnivores, adapted to eating plants and animals (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human#Diet)

      FACT: Veganism is nearly always a moral choice, and as with all morals, not everyone shares them.

      FACT: The claim that veganism is healthier is not justification for shaming the remaining 98% of the US population.

      FACT: 70% of those attempting dietary veganism in the US abandon it. (https://faunalytics.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Faunalytics_Current-Former-Vegetarians_Full-Report.pdf).

      So, how about choosing to live your life as a vegan (though the odds are 7 out of 10 you’ll abandon it), and you let the rest of us do what we want to do?

      Thanks

  6. Not sure where the $3,000 amount is coming from, that is ludicrously over priced! Authentic Japanese Wagyu ranges, on average, between $20-$40 per ounce. Depending of course on the cut, the marbling (A5 being the highest), and as Bob stated which prefecture of Wagyu you’re talking about. But you can go to places in SF like 5A5 or Alexander’s and get an 8oz Wagyu ribeye for around $300 or so. Again, prices will fluctuate and these are just averages. If you spent $3K it would mean you got a roughly 5lb steak…which I doubt anyone is doing. Not sure if she was exaggerating to arouse interest in the article or something?

  7. Just imagine how good a cheeseburger made with that beef would taste. Each of those bites could maybe even make 2 McDonald’s Dollar Menu size burgers!

  8. As you probably remember, Doug Keane lost his shirt on a short-lived and too pricey steak house in Healdsburg, I think it was called Shimu, overestimating the tolerance of diners for $100 steaks. Maybe he underestimated them! Rich people often overpay and enjoy doing it, as if to demonstrate that they don’t have to worry about spending money, as price is literally no object.

    1. I had the best steak of my life at Shimo. It was $75 and served two people. The Japanese flavors were spot on and all food was delicious.
      Not a low cost restaurant but it had most excellent food.
      Then the recession hit. Whaaaa waaaa!

      1. I had one of the best of my life, too, at Shimo. It was a concept that Healdsburg wasn’t quite ready for in the doldrums of the recession.

  9. Actually for many years Miyazaki Wagyu (“Kuroge Washu” or “Japanese Black”), bred in the Miyazaki prefecture has been considered the best beef in Japan, even surpassing the quality of Kobe and the Tajima strain of cattle. Many restaurants that want to truly serve the “best” beef in the world will use Miyazaki exclusively.

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