Wagyu is a type of high-class beef that is currently garnering popularity on a worldwide level. President Obama saying that he wanted to try Kobe Beef (a type of Wagyu brand) when he came to Japan is now a famous episode. Wagyu brands have a thoroughly controlled bloodline and is raised with extreme care to produce a tender, melt-in-your-mouth, unique flavor and texture. In Tokyo, high level Wagyu can be enjoyed in specialty eateries like sukiyaki and steak restaurants. And regions all over Japan serve brands of beef raised in that region. Enjoy the incredible flavor of Wagyu, another famous type of Japanese food alongside sushi.
Dishes featuring Wagyu beef are a must-try when coming to Japan. If you like richly flavored foods, sukiyaki is the choice for you. And if you are in the mood for a light and healthy meal, we recommend shabu-shabu. Both of these are pot dishes. If you want to enjoy an even higher level of convenience, steaks are great too. Big cities like Tokyo, Sapporo, and Kyoto have a lot of specialty restaurants dealing in high quality Wagyu. You can also enjoy Wagyu in specialty restaurants in the hotel
The king of Japanese meat cuisine. Cooking styles differ between east and west Japan, but the main style is to flavor thinly sliced beef with soy sauce, sugar, and rice wine and simmer in a pot along with vegetables. Dip in a raw egg sauce when eating to enjoy a mild flavor.
Quickly dip beef strips sliced even thinner than sukiyaki in a simmering broth, then dip them in sauce and eat. This dish brings out the true value of the tender and delicate Wagyu. Here the sauce is a big part of the flavor, with choices like sauce with ground sesame seeds and sauce made from citrus fruit juices.
Though this is not a style of cooking unique to Japan, it is definitely a great way to enjoy the rich, savory flavor and fine, melt-in-your-mouth marbling unique to Wagyu. Try some at a steak restaurant specializing in Wagyu.
Though sushi is generally made with seafood, some sushi restaurants and yakiniku (Korean style barbeque) restaurants do serve nigiri-zushi made with Wagyu. High quality Wagyu has a low temperature for the marbling to melt, so it will melt in your mouth.
This is a day trip from Osaka to Kyoto, Nara and Kobe. Tour sites you will visit include: Kyoto Arashiyama, Kinkaku-ji, Nara Todaiji Temple and Park, and the Kobe MOSAIC. With convenient pickup near hotels located in Umeda and Namba, your trip will be culturally-enriching, but also easy!
You will be picked up at either Umeda or Namba.
Upon arrival at Arashiyama, you will tour the Arashiyama district located in the Western part of Kyoto. This area becomes most attractive around early April and late November when the cherry blossoms bloom and fall color seasons usually peak. During the summer months, traditional cormorant fishing is practiced on the Hozu River for tourists to watch. One highly recommended spot is the Sagano Bamboo Forest. It is a pleasantly cool 100m long walkway that begins from the side of the world heritage Tenryuji Temple. Later, you will have lunch at a buffet of filled with an assortment of 60 Kyoto dishes.
After lunch, you will tour the Kinkaku-ji temple. Kinkaku, a pagoda made to house the sacred relics of the Buddha, has given this temple the popular name of Kinkaku-ji (Temple of the Golden Pavilion). But the official name of this branch temple of the Rinzai sect Zen temple of Shokoku-ji is Rokuon-ji. This complex, whose gardens and architecture focused around a central Golden Pavilion, was said to evoke paradise on earth. And the view of Kinkaku which is reflected in the Kyoko-chi (Mirror Pond) is very beautiful. This was built by the third Ashikaga Shogun Yoshimitsu for his own villa but turned into a temple after his death. This temple was rebuilt in 1955.
Afterward, you will tour the Nara Park and the Todaiji Temple for about 2 hours. Within Nara Park you’ll find the Todai-ji Temple，a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The main gate to Todai-ji Temple，the Todai-ji Nandaimon Gate，is a national treasure.The great statue of Buddha within the temple is the biggest in Japan. Nara Park is notorious for the 1200 or so wild deer that live freely within the park. You can feed the deer 'senbei' snacks which are sold within the park for 150 yen a stack.
Then, enjoy dinner and shopping at the Kobe MOSAIC. The Kobe MOSAIC is a shopping mall which is located in the port of Kobe. There are roughly 80 restaurants and shops selling fashion goods and Kobe souvenirs. There is also a Ferris wheel at the amusement park in Mosaic Garden, you can take a ride and enjoy the Kobe night scenery.
Your dinner will be all-you-can-eat Shabu-Shabu which includes assorted vegetables, a drink bar (soft drinks) and soft serve ice cream. You will have the choice of beef, pork, chicken or have all 3.
After dinner and shopping, you will be dropped off near the Namba 'OCAT' (9:15pm) or the Hearton Hotel Nishi-Umeda (9:30pm).