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It’s not a McKobe burger, but it’ll have to do.

Mike Pomranz
March 21, 2018

In the United States, McDonald’s has been undertaking a major shift from frozen to fresh beef— a change we happen to think has made the burgers significantly better. But in Australia, the world’s largest burger chain seems to have gone above and beyond: McDonald’s Australia today unveiled a new burger made with one of the world’s most coveted types of beef: wagyu. 

Made with 100 percent, Australian-bred Wagyu beef, the new burger doesn’t come cheap: $10.75 in Australian dollars or about $8.30 in USD. (Just to clarify, though Wagyu beef originated in Japan, Wagyu cows can be raised anywhere; however, Wagyu beef shouldn’t be confused with its subcategories like Kobe beef that must come from a specific region.) At that price, nearly twice the A$5.70 of a Big Mac, customers get more than just beef with flashy pedigree: the new menu item also features a special sauce, crispy bacon strips, caramelized onion, tomato, lettuce and a slice of Coon Cheese, all served on a new gourmet bun. It's only available for a limited time, "while supplies last."

The burger brand says it’s the first time it’s ever offered Wagyu beef in any of its products. “The launch of this burger is further testament to our commitment to use local suppliers wherever possible,” Robert Sexton, director of supply chain at McDonald’s Australia, said according to news.com.au. “We estimate that while this burger is on our menu, we’ll purchase more than 280 metric tonnes of Wagyu beef from Queensland.”

However, judging by the initial response from its patrons, McDonald’s may want to rethink its strategy if the chain does it again. News.com.au pointed out how plenty of people turned to the fast food giant’s Facebook page to vent about the price.

“Go to a proper burger place or cafe in Melb and pay $15 with chips and salad,” one social media user suggested.

Meanwhile, those who did shell out for the fancy beef burger weren’t necessarily impressed. “Patty cooked to death sometime last week and presented with unmelted cheese, tomato, bacon, a crapton of wilted lettuce and a smear of nondescript sauce on a dry oversized bun,” a member of the Facebook group Fatties Burger Appreciation Society posted to the group. Well, sure, if you want to get specific about things.