6 Must-Try Hida Beef Dishes in Takayama
Hida beef is the specific name given to beef from a black-haired Japanese cattle breed that has been raised in Gifu Prefecture for at least 14 months. It is one of the most famous beef types in Japan, alongside Matsuzaka beef and the world-famous Kobe beef. It is known for its marble quality for that melt-in-your-mouth experience.
Let’s look at 6 Hida beef dishes that you must try when visiting Takayama. Coupled with a nice walk around town, you can start this journey early in the day and end with a good Hida beef dinner.
Beef croquette made from the high quality Hida beef
Korokke (croquette) might not be traditionally Japanese, but it is a common dish found in many convenience stores and local markets. In Takayama, the beef used to make these croquettes is the locally produced Hida beef.
Hida beef skewers is a must-try for all beef lovers
Grilled Hida beef on a stick is one of the best ways to really taste the quality of beef from this region. It also won’t break your bank, as it is usually around ¥500 per stick. They are found in a few places around Takayama and it’s better to have them earlier in the day, as they are quite popular and will run out.
A bowl of ramen topped with Hida beef
Ramen served with Hida beef topping can be found in a few restaurants around Takayama. They are a great lunch option before you head out to sample other snacks around town.
Hida beef sushi really melts in your mouth
The best sushi shops in Japan are usually found near fish markets or seaside towns, as they are mainly topped with fresh fish and seafood. In Takayama, however, slices of Hida beef are placed on a bed of vinegar rice; and they taste delicious!
Hida beef niku-man sampled at the preserved old town area
If you’ve visited Japan before, chances are you would have had your share of niku-man found in convenience stores and other tourist locations. In Takayama, though, Hida beef is used for the filling of the meat buns, making it softer and juicier.
Hida beef plate at Maruaki, a famous yakiniku restaurant in Takayama
There are many popular yakiniku restaurants in Takayama that serve high-grade Hida beef. Some consider them to be better than Kobe beef (and cheaper too!), so you’ll just have to try them for yourself. For those who prefer something lighter, these restaurants usually have options for sukiyaki (thinly sliced beef simmered in a shallow pot).
Visiting Takayama will not be complete without trying these 6 Hida beef dishes, a culinary experience you will not want to miss!
The famous gassho-zukuri farmhouses in Shirakawa-go
Tourists who visit Takayama should also check out Shirakawa-go, a UNESCO world heritage site famous for its traditional gassho-zukuri (praying hands thatched roofs) farmhouses. Local shops also sell Hida beef snacks similar to the ones found in Takayama.
Takayama is easily accessible from Nagoya using the Hida limited express train, covered by JR Pass. Reserve your seats by the window for gorgeous views of the mountains and the valleys. Add this itinerary to your next Japan trip and taste all the Hida beef dishes!