Kobe beef specialist hits new high for UK restaurant bill

A new wagyu-specialist Japanese restaurant opens in Mayfair next week which is expected to charge an astonishing £750 per person for a meal with wine.

Aragawa, on Clarges Street, is the first European branch of a restaurant that originated in 1956 in Kobe, capital of Hyogo prefecture, and home of the best wagyu cattle – it sources beef from the Tajima breed raised in Sanda, which is restricted to 1,000 animals a year. A Tokyo branch opened 10 years later.

The opening comes just three months after another Japanese restaurant, Sushi Kanesaka, became the first restaurant in Britain to break the £400-a-head barrier for a standard meal – with an optional wine or sake pairing costing a further £150.

A spokesman for Aragawa said a meal there would cost “roughly £750-plus, depending on wine” – and with a list of grand cru wines from Bordeaux and Burgundy, the bill could easily go much higher than that.

Kotaro Ogawa, who is launching the Mayfair branch, added: “We are bringing the best quality when it comes to the meat, something you rarely see even in Japan. This means the cost of the meat is very high. We are not just overpricing it because it is London.”

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