Wednesday, April 25, 2012

In which cattle marinade themselves perhaps?

Hmm. Young Farmers and Beer. What does the song say?  'They go together like a horse and, la, la, you can't have one without the other' etc.... Or something.

Last evenings YFC jaunt to Ivor's Wagyu Beef farm was a case in point...these were beer drinking cattle. And these beasts could slurp with the best of them! The Glam Ass and I tagged along, ever curious observers.

For the uninitiated Wagyu cattle are of Japanese origin and are noted for their particularly marbled meat - a quality which enhances both succulence and flavour. In recent years the trend in this country has been, led by supermarkets who claim to reflect the wants of the consumer, for leaner cuts. Fat is the Devil's spawn and must be excised at all costs. I would concur with our new friend Ivor - a marbled steak is a wonderful, toothsome thing. Ivor is ploughing a lonely furrow in commercial terms though - his is a one mans campaign to put flavoursome high quality meat with FAT in it back on our plates.

But back to the beer. In Japan, this highly prized breed is cossetted; its muscles massaged and, to stimulate appetite, promote relaxation and a feeling of well-being, they are given beer...a feeling that most YF's will know well. Ivor's not one to buck a trend so he too indulges his cattle, talks to them, caresses them and has done a deal with the local brewery, Monty's, so that they might enjoy a litre or three of ale of an evening. (Do click the link - it's a pretty good beer for people too.) The result, he assures us, is an unstressed animal and an unstressed animal makes better eating.

We meet Abramovitch the bull and his offspring too - they are rather similar to the Limousin X beasts we are more familiar with but take longer to 'finish' - and there's the rub, this all makes for a more expensive product. We tasted some and it was good - I shall be looking out for some at our local butcher. Worth it - definitely - for a special meal. I'll create a demand.


Cro Magnon said...

Lucky cows.

I thought Young Farmer's was just a dating agency!

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

I hope you didn't share your last sentence with the herd !
But I agree , a really good piece of meat now and then is much better than lots of cheap stuff .

Annie said...

Sounds good to me :-)
A x

Sarah Tavenner said...

When I was growing up there was a pony near us who had a bucket of beer from the local pub each night I was fascinated by this as a child! I have read about these beer bred massage soothed tranquil cows in japan, I wish someone would do that for me you think gin would ahve the same effect ?

Twiglet said...

It would make steak n' ale pie easy to produce!

Fennie said...

I remember seeing Peter O'Toole bring a camel on stage and then giving it a can of beer which it duly tipped up and drank before squashing the can with its lips. Which makes you wonder what might be in the camel's hump. But yes I am all for good tasting meat properly reared on happy animals. Factory farming is a curse. We do not respect ourselves by eating junk food and neither do we respect the animals it comes from

Mac n' Janet said...

A beer drinking cow has got to taste good, and here's to beef with marbling!

elizabethm said...

Abramovitch the bull? Love it.

Preseli Mags said...

We once sent a pig off on its final journey with a belly full of homemade wine. It was the best pork ever (but just a one-off - I get too attached to pigs to eat them). Pork is horrid if stressed. I can see it would work with cattle too. I hope our sheep don't get any similar ideas and start demanding alcoholic refreshments!

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

Peter O'Toole was on stage with a beer drinking camel .
What in ? "Lawrence of Arabia , The Musical "?