Stephs Cheers and Jeers was provided samples of Vermont Wagyu in return for this post.
Before my visit to Spring-Rock Farm in Springfield, VT I had only ever heard the word Wagyu. My ex-husband worked briefly at a Wagyu farm when we were together and the breed always fascinated me. I was a bit shocked to find out that Spring-Rock was so close to my house and that I had not heard of it before! The staff was super kind to offer me a full farm tour and off my Fiance and I went.
Wagyu translates to “Japanese cow” and is known for its depth of flavor and fat marbling. Wagyu was used for centuries as working cattle due to their endurance which lead to more intra-muscular fat cells. This fat cell marbling leads to a unique texture that Wagyu meat is known for. Wagyu breeding dates back to the 19th century and moved to US in 1976 when four bulls were brought across the Pacific Ocean to be raised on US soil. Three female Wagyu cows were brought to the US in 1993 which made for the breeding of full-blooded Wagyu beef in the US possible. Even today Wagyu is still rare in the US and these cows are recognized for their rarity as a breed here and their rich flavor.
About the Farm:
Spring-Rock Farm stated in 2008 with 20 Wagyu embryos. The farm sits on 350 acres in total and is spit up into five and ten-acre pastures with natural features that protect the Wagyu from winds and snowdrifts. The Wagyu at Spring-Rock are raised without the use of hormones or steroids. They also receive no unnecessary antibiotics and their steers are primary grass-fed and grain-finished with a GMO-free diet. This historical farm was originally built in 1780 and is located in the Parker Hill District which is a National Historic Site, consisting of 25 buildings built in the late 1700s and early 1800s.
The farm is 3.7 miles from my house tucked up on a beautiful secluded road. I honestly had no idea this farm even existed but once we drove up there I was totally amazed by the old farmhouse and all the cows.
I met with Farm Owner, Sheila, and Office Manager Jackie. After a brief introduction in the parking lot, Sheila gave my fiance and I a tour of the farm and answered many questions I had about what it’s like being a Farmer as well as Wagyu Beef.
I was really impressed with how well-kept the farm was and how calm the animals were. While I have never been around Wagyu Cattle, I have been around several farm animals over the years and its very clear that Sheila and her staff take pride in the farm and provide the animals the very best.
We did get a treat at the farm and got to see an adorable little Wagyu calf that was born a few days prior to our visit.
I spent about an hour and a half at the farm and before we parted Sheila sent me home with a bag of different Wagyu including ground, short ribs, steaks, and even some bones for Loki!.
I ended up making some burgers out of the ground Wagyu Beef and threw them on the grill where they came out super tasty!
My fiance also spoiled me with Steak, Eggs, and Hashbrowns in bed one morning.
A lot of people have since asked me my thoughts on Wagyu, I will say you can definitely taste the difference. I found the Wagyu I tried to be very fresh, flavorful, and “clean” tasting. I feel like there is a clean flavor difference between farm-fresh meat and store-bought. The flavor is hard to explain but it was unlike any beef I have ever had before. I am very impressed and if you are in the Springfield, VT area I suggest checking out their Facebook page to find when they set up for events.
You can also use their online store to purchase Wagyu and have it shipped directly to you.