Get us in your inbox


Wagyu Ya

  • Restaurants
  • South Yarra
  1. A piece of Japanese beef on a charcoal grill.
    Photograph: Griffin Simm
  2. A piece of Japanese beef on fire on a charcoal grill at Wagyu Ya.
    Photograph: Griffin Simm
  3. Two pieces of Wagyu nigiri from Wagyu Ya.
    Photograph: Griffin Simm

Time Out says

Looking to try Kobe beef? This luxe Japanese steakhouse south of the river is one of the few venues in Melbourne to carry it

Don't let the unassuming exterior fool you: behind the wood-panelled front entryway of this establishment lies a luxe Japanese dining experience that is actually unparallelled in Melbourne. Wagyu Ya is one of only three restaurants in the entirety of Australia with a licence allowing it to cook and serve Kobe beef, the rarest and most expensive beef in the world.

Kobe beef is derived from the same strain of cattle as Wagyu beef, but must come from the Hyogo Prefecture, where regulations are very strict. Only around three to four thousand cattle each year meet the standards and the result is creamy, highly marbled and flavourful meat. Is your mouth watering yet?

If you're keen on a solo lunch or dinner, order a serve of the M9+ Wagyu steak served with a side of kimchi and garlic chips. But for dates or group dinners, we recommend trying the Japanese-style hot pot known as shabu shabu. You'll start by choosing a soup base, and you'll receive platters of assorted vegetables, A5 Wagyu and M9+ full-blooded Wagyu to cook in your broth. 

Before the mains, kick things off with a cold entree like the Wagyu tataki, a dish of seared M9+ Wagyu with housemade ponzu sauce, julienned Spanish onion and a tart relish, or the refreshing salmon carpaccio topped with micro shiso. And although Wagyu Ya is a steakhouse, it also has an impressive sushi menu that includes imported toro (tuna belly) sushi that's worth trying even at a steep $19 per piece. It's so soft and buttery that it literally will melt in your mouth. 

Be sure to ask waitstaff which Japanese whisky or sake to pair with your meal, or quench your thirst with a cocktail or housemade peach, lychee or strawberry iced tea. 

To make a booking head to the Wagyu Ya website

Adena Maier
Written by
Adena Maier


156 Toorak Rd
South Yarra
Opening hours:
Daily 11.30am-3pm & 5-10pm
You may also like
You may also like