I’ve tried wagyu before in different places but nothing prepared me for my first meeting with the SAGA-Gyu brand full blood wagyu from Japan. The SAGA brand comes from black cattle raised in Saga Prefecture, Japan and now available in the Philippines for the first time ever. The House of Wagyu will the first restaurant in the Philippines to serve it and adds to their inventory of indulgent cuts of beef. I got a sneak taste last week at this wondrous piece of beef.
There was cocktails served first together with some Oysters Rockefeller, Saga A5 Wagyu Sashimi and other hors d’oeuvres paired with wine and champagne.
We started the meal with a Cream of Carrot Soup. I’ve had this before but the plating with the leaf on the side was way prettier but still tasty.
Scallop and Shrimp Salad with Strawberry Vinaigrette was next. This was another dish I tried previously at the Podium branch when we tasted their Australian wagyu. This was a light yet tasty prelude to the main event.
Here’s a little background on the Saga brand and Japanese wagyu in general. All Japanese wagyu have 5 meat grade (A1-5) and 12 BMS (beef marbling standard) levels. “Saga, “Kobe”, Matzusaka” are all just different brands of Japanese wagyu from Japanese Black Cattle. The black cattle from Japan are the only ones that can claim to be full blood with no mixing in of other breeds.
What sets Saga apart from other brands is that it does not put it’s brand on anything less than an A4 Grade 7 piece of full blood wagyu. Anything less than that is tagged with their lower tier brand.
Each person was served 200 grams of Saga-Gyu A5 Grade 11, sliced already into 4 pieces. You might be saying that’s a pretty small serving but the richness of the beef means you can only consume a small amount. 200 grams is just perfect to be satiated yet not feel cloy.
The House of Wagyu signature volcanic rock plate (heated in a special oven for 8 hours) came out as served as the cooking plate for our special dinner.
Time to get cooking, I sliced the pieces into two to make it easier to cook and eat. Sprinkled salt and pepper and just let it sizzle and cook. I had it cooked to about somewhere between medium rare and medium and popped one piece into my mouth. As people were eating at almost the same time, a hush fell over the restaurant as all of our taste buds were experiencing something akin to an “orgasm” in our mouth. Just a little bite and the whole piece seemed to have melted into nothingness leaving behind the distinct flavors of Japanese wagyu.
A little tidbit about the fat/marbling in Japanese wagyu si that they contain a high amount of oleic acid. Oleic Acid not only enhances the umami flavors but also promotes increase of good intestinal bacteria and may be effective for autoimmune disorders.
Mashed potatoes is usually served with their steaks but they decided to give good ole garlic rice a try. This is the Philippines and everyone loves rice and garlic rice just kicks it up a notch. It plays the perfect foil for the Saga-gyu we were having.
Dessert was a Strawberry and Mango Mille Feuille with Olive Oil Ice Cream. The dessert felt a little anticlimactic after the wagyu. A bevy of textures and flavors but the ice cream is a little too icy for my tastes.
Diners at House of Wagyu can now choose between the Saga-gyu wagyu or their other wagyu offerings. I can only eat something as rich as this occasionally but when indulging you might as well go all the way. This meeting with the Saga-gyu is a very memorable thing for me
*Please call your nearest House of Wagyu branch for pricing details.*
House of WagyuManila Bay 2 Ecom Building Harbour Drive, Mall of Asia Complex Pasay Contact No.: (632) 553-8437 Eastwood Mall Ground Level, Eastwood Mall
Contact No. (632) 706-5385 Podium 5th Level Podium Mall
Contact No. (632) 635-3056 Greenhills Mckinley Arcade
Ortigas cor. Club Filipino Drive
Contact No. (632) 725-7450
Facebook Page: House of Wagyu
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