Ishigaki beef comes from a small island in the Okinawan Prefecture. Ishigaki is far less developed than the main Okinawan island, leaving plenty of room to sustainably and humanely raise their beef cows.
Whatever your stance on eating meat, we can all agree that animals should be treated with respect, no matter what their fate. In Ishigaki, cows are raised in open fields, taken on daily walks and fed prime diets. And it shows in the meat. Ishigaki beef is proof that the way you treat an animal does impact the quality of the product.
On the main Okinawan island, there are many opportunities to taste Ishigaki beef, which makes Kobe seem like a joke. The Ishigakijima Kitchen makes the best burger in the world because of this beef. While I tried one with a variety of toppings, I’d go simpler next time. The beef is so flavorful and tender, it doesn’t really need anything. Ishigaki meat is so pure and delicious, it’s sometimes served raw over rice.
While under acknowledged, this is a must try dish of Japan.