Wagyu Steak vs Wafu Steak: What is the Difference?

When I eat out, in many cases, I go to one of my favorite ramen shops, sometimes to a Japanese or Chinese restaurant.

And our family seldom eats steak at home, so I have little opportunity to have beef steak in my daily life.

By the way, speaking of beef steak, have you ever heard of the two types of beef steak that represent Japan, “Wagyu steak (和牛ステーキ)” and “Wafu steak (和風ステーキ)”?

Wagyu Steak vs Wafu Steak 

Wagyu and Wafu are similar Japanese words, but Wagyu steak and Wafu steak are somewhat different things. Then, what is the difference between them?

For the unfamiliar, today, let me explain that.

Wagyu Steak


First off, the Japanese term “Wagyu (和牛)” can be divided into two words, Wa and Gyu.

The former “Wa (和)” means the adjective “Japanese” in this case, while the latter “Gyu (牛)” refers to beef cattle. 

Therefore, Wagyu steak is made with a slice of meat from Japanese beef cattle, and representative Wagyu brands include Matsusaka beef, Kobe beef, Maezawa beef, Omi beef, and Tajima beef.

The cooking method of Wagyu steak is varied and includes both Western and Japanese-style.

Wafu Steak 

Wafu Steak

As with Wagyu, the Japanese term “Wafu (和風)” can be divided into two words, “Wa (和)” meaning the adjective “Japanese” and “Fu (風)” meaning “style” in this case. 

Thus, Wafu steak is the beefsteak unique to Japan in which ponzu sauce, soy sauce, and mirin are typically used to make the sauce, while wasabi and grated Daikon radish are often prepared as garnishes.

Wafu steak can be made with slices of beef from various countries. But if the Japanese steak is made using a slice of Wagyu meat, in addition to being a Wafu steak, the beefsteak is also a Wagyu steak.

(Reference Page: Wikipedia ステーキ )


Hi, I'm Tomo, a Japanese blogger living in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. For the purpose of enriching your life, I would like to introduce things about Japan on this blog, especially unique Japanese products, cooking recipes, cultures, and facts and trivia.

5 Responses

  1. Whitney says:

    Thank u soo much for this explanation!!😫🙏 I’ve been looking for one everywhere!🤓🥩 Now; Can anyone tell me the difference between Wagyu, Wafu & Wahu please? (Is “Wahu” just another way to pronounce “Wafu”???)🧐🤔💭

  2. Whitney says:

    Ah okay!! Thanks again~🤗

  1. April 7, 2021

    […] Wagyu Steak vs Wafu Steak: What is the Difference? […]

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