Asda flogs cheap Wagyu beef and caviar

Asda wants to lure posher shoppers into its stores with promises of cut-price Japanese Wagyu beef, caviar and lobster, amongst other gourmet staples.

The Japanese meat is selling at Asda for £22 a kilo - around six times cheaper than you'll find in many upmarket food halls. But not everyone is impressed with Asda's upmarket offerings.%VIRTUAL-SkimlinksPromo%

Stake raising

Wagyu beef is on the sweet side. Asda previously claimed their own version is a cross between Wagyu and Holstein cattle. "We imported Wagyu bull semen from Japan and used it to impregnate Holstein dairy cattle to produce a slightly less highly marbled meat which many British customers prefer."

And the Independent food citric, Samuel Muston, went into raptures over it. "I loved the deeply savoury flavour and velvety texture," he said. "If you fancy indulging, the best way to cook it is the Japanese method: cut it into slices and flash fry it, which prevents the rich internal fat from seeping out."

Wet, anaemic

Muston also described the meat as "decently capillarised" (whatever that means). Other critics were much less flattering about Asda's foray into aspirational dining.

"It was wet and slightly anaemic-looking," said the Guardian, "and most importantly it had only a few specks of fat distributed within its flesh."

A rack of venison with cranberry and port butter is also on offer from Asda for £35 a kilo plus a three-bird roast of turkey, duck and chicken - £20.

But don't forget your local butcher. A good local shop will often attract a long queue outside at this time of year if they're known for quality and fair prices, and they're more likely to offer meat which is locally sourced.

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Asda flogs cheap Wagyu beef and caviar

This takes time, but once you know the cost of a phone call, putting the dryer on, or a bag of potatoes, it enables you to judge far better how much you can afford to consume.

Once you know the base price, you are in a position to keep your eyes open for a better offer. If you see a discount you can judge for yourself whether it actually constitutes a bargain. For bigger things like utilities it enables you to do a proper price comparison and see if you can cut your bills.

Don't just assume that the premium range is better, try the every-day brand, or even the basic version and see if you spot the difference. Likewise, consider trading down your supermarket from one of the big players to local markets or discounters like Aldi.

If you plan what you buy to match what you actually cook and eat then not only will you be able to budget far more effectively, but you'll also waste much less and find your money goes further without you having to try.

If you can't think of a way to get your meat for less, consider a vegetarian day once a week. If you can't find petrol any cheaper, then work on making your driving as efficient as possible. The more you can think of clever alternatives the less you will have to make painful cuts to make ends meet.

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