A sendai beef dinner

THE PEPPER MILL - Pepper Teehankee - The Philippine Star
A sendai beef dinner
Miso Marinated Sendai BBQ Shortrib.

At certain Japanese restaurants, you'll see the word "Kuroge" Japanese Black on menus and signboards. Among the four breeds of wagyu (literally translated to” Japanese beef”), the Japanese Black cattle make up 95% of wagyu. The three biggest wagyu brands Kobe, Matsuzaka, and Omi are all Japanese Black.  Other famous brands from the Japanese Black cattle, which are also some of the most delicious, are Yonezawa, Miyazaki, and Sendai beef.

Sendai is the capital of the Miyagi prefecture. Here cows feast on Sasanishiki rice stalks and barley grain to create a robust flavor alongside the amazing marbling. A5-grade Sendai beef is the only beef in Japan that requires a BMS (or Beef Marble Score) of 10+ to qualify as Sendai Beef. Sendai beef is less than .05% of Japanese production and is now imported by Hightower, Inc.

Chefs Carlo Miguel and James Antolin had a dinner highlighting Sendai beef at one of my favorite Japanese restaurants, Ikomai. Prior to dinner, there were four stations where guests enjoyed butter soy scallops, Sendai short rib tataki  (seared outside and rare inside) on crostini (crusty bread), wagyu neck and ikura  (salmon roe) on mashed potatoes, and miso-marinated Sendai short rib barbecue (my favorite).

Air-flown Gindara Sashimi.

Dinner followed with octopus carpaccio, Sendai cheek tartare with truffle, Iberico kakuni, Japanese rice topped with Sendai chuck and short ribs topped with garlic. We were also lucky to have fresh, air-flown gindara (black cod or sablefish) sashimi!  This type of fish is often frozen immediately but they managed to get a never-frozen fish, which was incredibly delicious eaten as sashimi! Everything that night was so good that I ate so much! Sendai beef truly is excellent wagyu!

It was also nice to see so many people (we still wore masks when not eating) out, giving the dinner some semblance of normalcy. The Sendai beef will soon be available on the menu of Ikomai.

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Ikomai is located on the Ground Floor of ACI Building, 147 H.V. Dela Costa Street, Salcedo Village, Makati City.  Call (0999) 887-0297 or landline 816-4588 for reservations. Call Hightower at landline 8523-4099 or 8524-6411 for inquiries.

Dinner by your local x taste & tell

I tried Instagram seller Taste & Tell’s Kani Aburi (torched layer of crabstick and sauce on rice) during the lockdown and loved it.  Taste & Tell’s sisters Marika, Mariell, Pamela, and Trixie Chuateco have collaborated with Your Local’s Patrick Go and Sonny Mariano to come up with an amazing Japanese fusion eight-course dinner that includes three specialty drinks. Experience innovative and interesting twists on sake nigiri sushi, tuna tartare, strip loin with gula melaka (coconut sugar) soy glaze, and chili crab congee! Three dishes are from Taste & Tell, three are from Your Local, and two are created by both teams.

Your Local’s Charlie Paw, Patrick Go, and Sonny Mariano.
Photos by PEPPER TEEHANKEE on a Leica C Digital Camera

Two dinners scheduled for March 31 and April 1 were quickly sold out so they have added two more dates, April 7 and 8.  Reserve now. You won’t want to miss this excellent dinner.

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Your Local is located on the Ground Floor of Universal LMS Building, Makati City.  Call (0977) 4879236 for inquiries or reservations.  Check out @tasteandtellmnl on Instagram.

Follow me on Instagram @pepperteehankee.



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