The original can go up to US$85, but it’s only SG$18.90 at the local restaurant
The thing about viral food videos is that it mercilessly unearths massive cravings you didn’t know you had. And more often than not, these culinary teases require a plane ticket to eateries located in far-flung corners of the earth – a huge inconvenience to quell your foodie desires, we think.
So when local restaurants attempt to give you a taste of these viral dishes via their copycat versions, consider us appreciative and very grateful.
The case in question is the recent Waygu Katsu Sandwich that has made rounds on the internet. While originally from Japan, the meat sandwich was brought to the States and launched into popularity for its esteemed Japanese beef. We’re talking about the highest A5-grade Wagyu beef from Miyazaki Prefecture – a region that champions its nation’s own Wagyu Olympics (yes, it’s a thing) for the last 10 years. Prices can go up to US$100 per pound for the premium beef.
In a viral FOOD Insider clip, New York City’s SakaMai displays the makings of the famed beef sandwich, or called Wagyu Katsu Sando. The construction itself is rather straightforward: A chunk of the premium beef, seasoned with seaweed salt and ground pepper, is coated in panko batter before deep-fried; it is then slathered with a special katsu sauce and assembled with buttered toasted bread (the restaurant uses Japanese milk bread). Finally, the sandwich is cut into six and served with the crust cut off. On top of the hefty price tag of US$85, the restaurant only serves three of the meat sandwichs each day.
Not to be outdone by FOMO, gourmet butchery-cum-restaurant The Butcher’s Kitchen has recreated the Wagyu Katsu sandwich, called the NY Wagyu Steak Sandwich, and it is now offered at the Suntec outlet, alongside other new additions such as an array of beef bowls.
The duo-concept outlet follows the components of the original sandwich closely, but not without tweaks to bring down the cost to a modest $18.90. The sandwich’s affordability points to The Butcher’s Kitchen’s use of a lower-grade Australian wagyu beef, taken from the rump area where meat is leaner and boasts only moderate marbling. In comparison to SakaMai’s version, of which beef is seemingly depicted to cut through like butter due to its high marbling content, The Butcher’s Kitchen’s sandwich is tougher, giving a bite to its overall texture. While its tougher profile is deliberate, the establishment’s beef, which also sports a decent katsu exterior, will inevitably require a bit of work from your set of chompers. So chowing down on the NY Wagyu Steak Sandwich may be quite a messy affair. Traditional Singapore white bread (the fluffy one you may have eaten with kaya) is used to cushion the beef, and The Butcher’s Kitchen’s signature brown sauce, to go with the bread, is served on the side.
While it may not have lived up to our expectations of what the original Wagyu Katsu sandwich could have tasted like, we were quite satisfied with the version from The Butcher’s Kitchen’s, keeping in mind that the establishment serves up a more wallet-friendly offering. However, there’s definitely room for fine-tuning, like using polished ingredients to elevate the sandwich to become more than what it is. And also, perhaps an option to have our sandwich assembled with a higher-grade (and more tender) of wagyu in the future?
Address: Suntec City Mall Towers 1 & 2 (North Wing) #02-472 Singapore 038989
Opening Hours: 11am – 3pm, 5pm – 9pm, Last order 8:30pm (Monday to Friday); 11am – 9pm, Last order 8:30pm (Saturday – Sunday)