You almost need to be a genetic engineer to follow the prompts on the menu at Moo Moo, The Wine Bar & Grill at Broadbeach on the Gold Coast.
Some expertise in the Japanese language wouldn’t go astray either. Watch the waiter struggle to explain a dish called 2GRFullblood Wagyu, Tikima, Itozakura, Kikumidoi, grain-fed 400 days, 30-36 months of age, MB 7+.
Translation: Firstly, it means you are being fed by Australia’s richest person.
The 2GR brand is made from the initials of Gina Rinehart and her daughter Ginia Rinehart, who are putting together the nation’s biggest beef herds.
The inspiration behind the 2GR fullblood Wagyu beef brand dates back more than 100 years to when Gina Rinehart’s great-grandfather, John, had three sons: her grandfather, George Hancock, and his two brothers, John and Richard. John Snr founded the “H3B” brand for cattle and sheep, which stood for Hancock 3 Brothers, named for his sons.
Wagyu is a catch-all name to describe several Japanese bloodlines, including Tikima, Itozakura, and Kikumidoi, the most prized of all.
I had the 2GR 300g fullblood rostbiff ($58), which means I had a fancy rump steak, with a marble score of seven, a measure of the fat content.
It was finished on grain, probably with a bit of molasses in the ration that helps deliver a hint of burnt caramel. Moo Moo steaks are cooked over coal and wood.
My steak was so flavoursome and so unctuous, it was a culinary journey to the edge of decadence. Munching away, I suddenly realised that 2GR is more than a steak.
It’s an Australian emblem, a full-blooded tribute to the enterprise and perseverance personified by legendary pastoralist Sidney Kidman, the Rineharts, and a million forgotten drovers including my grandfather, who mustered cattle for Kidman in the Gulf.Rinehart bought out S. Kidman & Co, Australia’s largest beef producer, in 2016.
I had parked down the road and walked past perhaps a dozen restaurants offering the cuisine of Italy, Japan, France, Thailand and places in between. But none of these fine restaurants, it seemed to me, had the glamour of Moo Moo.
The dining room is voluminous and moody with subdued lighting and comfortable seating.
It’s like entering an exclusive club, and there were plenty of private corners where diners were conducting financial affairs or affairs of the heart.
My companion ate the Moo Moo specialty tenderloin (200g, $44), describing it as a juicy treat. With both meals we consumed a trio of sides ($24), including baby carrots, broccolini and portobello mushrooms.
There was a page of wines by the glass. When my friend’s first choice was not available, the waitress suggested we try a Taltarni 2016 Fume Blanc and gave us a taste. It had citrus notes with a faint passion zing. We drank it with oysters and were instantly hooked.
Moo Moo has a staggeringly good line-up of Australian fare, from organic pork belly and chicken to Chinese-style bang bang duck, pasta, Queensland reef fish and rock lobster and scampi from Western Australia.
There’s also a limited dessert menu with options including a white peach and blood peach panna cotta with vanilla meringue ($16).
But why the hell would you eat any of that if you had pulled up a chair at one of the nation’s great steakhouses?
A long, long list of designer steaks includes some that are silky and tender, while others deliver a visceral punch to the palate. Names such as Rangers Valley, Jack’s Creek and AAco stand out.
The world’s emerging middle classes are falling greedily in love with upscale Aussie beef. Lunch at Moo Moo showed us why.
MOO MOO THE WINE BAR & GRILL
2685 Gold Coast Highway, Broadbeach
BOOK (07) 5539 9952 moomoorestaurant.com/gold-coast
Seven days, 11am - midnight
The 2GR 300g fullblood rostbiff