Will the power of four of our reporters be enough to vanquish 10 pounds of meat?

As you well know by now, our Japanese language reporters are no strangers to food challenges. In fact, when it comes to meat, there’s nothing they won’t try. That’s why, when our Japanese-language reporter Mr. Sato found out that steak restaurant chain Ikinari Steak is offering a new 10-pound (approximately 4.5 kilogram) steak dish, he knew they would be taking it on.

Having just eaten a 5-kilogram meat-and-rice bowl, Mr. Sato was well prepared for this exercise. But that was a bento he was allowed to bring home and eat over time, while Ikinari Steak’s Deka-mori Steak-ju (or “Huge Portion Steak Box”) was served in-house only. Loathe as he was to admit it, Mr. Sato could not conquer this beast alone (and he didn’t want to pay 37,770 yen/US$356.77 for a meal by himself), so he brought three of his strongest, most carnivorous colleagues to help him in his task: P.K. Sanjun, Yuichiro Wasai, and Takashi Harada.

Well, actually, only two of those reporters are famously big eaters. P.K. has challenged himself over the last few years by eating 10,000 yen’s worth of all kinds of food, and Yuichiro’s articles are almost as full of food adventures as Mr. Sato’s. Only poor, sweet Takashi hasn’t challenged himself to gorging on an absurdly huge amount of food, so today would be the first test by which we can gauge the degree of his appetite.

As we mentioned, the bowl is made up of 4.5 kilograms of steak, so if we were to break it up evenly, that would be roughly 1.1 kilograms per person, or about 2.5 pounds. Given that our fearless reporters have eaten plenty of huge portions, 2.5 pounds seemed like an entirely doable challenge.

Anyway, that’s enough explanation. Let’s get to the meat and potatoes (or in this case, rice) of the story! Now we present to you the Deka-mori Steak-ju, in all its 10-pound glory.

Wasn’t she a beaut! Simply enormous! So large, in fact, that it was really hard to tell how large the portions actually were, even when our reporters were sitting right in front of it. Even with Mr. Sato’s iPhone for scale, it’s impossible to fully grasp the size of this baby.

The box was made up of multiple steaks lined up neatly one after the other, but they were not the only huge portions included. The corn, carrots, and broccoli were also piled high. The box itself, which is meant to emulate a layer of a traditional square, multi-layered lunch box, was easily eight times the size of a regular box.

The meat is what steals the show, though; unless you can tear your eyes away from these beautiful steaks, you probably wouldn’t even notice the sides.

And it was heavy!! 10 pounds is a lot of meat. That’s enough that, if somebody dropped it on their foot, it would hurt. A lot.

Now to begin the important business of eating it. To start with, our reporters each took one steak from the box. The steaks weighed in at 600 grams (1.3 pounds) each, and were so big that they didn’t even fit on the individual plates our reporters were given. With seven steaks of this size in the box, it’s no wonder it was so heavy.

You can eat it just as it’s served, or if you want it to be piping hot, you can also use the hot cast iron plate they provide you with to warm it up. The meat made a satisfying sizzling noise when it hit the plate. It was enough to make our reporters’ mouths water.

Underneath the steaks was an expansive bed of rice, much to our reporters’ chagrin. This elevated the challenge significantly; would they be able to eat all of that rice, seven steaks, and the huge portions of vegetables?

No choice but to dig in and try! In Mr. Sato’s veteran opinion, the first bite of a steak is always the best. In this case, too, that rang true. It was delicious! A bite of pure joy. If he could keep up this attitude, finishing this bowl would be a cinch.

Enjoying his first taste, Mr. Sato cast his glance over to rookie foodie Takashi, only to see him looking a little less blissful than expected.

As it turned out, Takashi didn’t quite chew his first bite enough and had a hard time swallowing it. It was an unfortunate setback to start with, but Mr. Sato reassured him all was okay. “No need to push yourself too hard, Takashi!”

A gruesome hour-long battle ensued, as the four brave challengers fought to consume as much steak as possible. But as they were entering the second half, Mr. Sato realized something. The box was supposed to contain 4.5 kilograms of meat. There were seven steaks, each weighing 600 grams, for a total of 4.2 kilograms. Where did the other 300 grams go?

Mr. Sato wondered if there was some kind of mistake, but he was already getting full and finishing the 4.2 kilograms of steak was looking to be a challenge in and of itself, so he thought he was just going to ignore the mysterious shortage…at least until he saw something peeking out from underneath the rice.

▼ “What the…”

“A Salisbury steak?!?!?!”

Buried underneath the rice was a 300-gram hamburg steak. Hiding food underneath a mound of rice is bento shop Kitchen Origin’s M.O., based on their five-kilogram bento, so Mr. Sato would never have expected Ikinari Steak to use the same underhanded tactic. Honestly, he and his comrades couldn’t help but feel a little deflated to discover at this point in the game that the enemy had a secret reserve of troops hiding away.

Still, our four warriors fought on bravely, and in the end, P.K. ate two steaks (for a total of 1.2 kilograms)…

Mr. Sato ate two steaks (for a total of 1.2 kilograms)…

Yuichiro ate two steaks (for a total of 1.2 kilograms)…

And Takashi ate one steak (600 grams) and half the hamburg steak (150 grams).

Altogether, our troop of carnivorous crusaders ate a total of 4.35 kilograms of meat. It was so close to the finish line that if they’d just pushed on a bit more, they could have made it…but when they spread out all of the rice and put it together with the vegetables and leftover meat, they knew that they did not have the strength to make it to the end.

▼ The whole trial is recorded in this video. Hear the despair in their voices when they discover the hidden hamburg steak at the 3:26 mark.

Thankfully, Mr. Sato had heard ahead of time that it was possible to take the leftovers home, so they asked the wait staff to separate it into four boxes that they could each take home.

By the way, our rookie challenger Takashi, upon returning to the office, said, “I need to rest for a minute”, and laid down on the floor for a good long while. Good work, Takashi. You fought a good fight.

The Dekamori Steak-ju is in collaboration with the TV Tokyo Program “Dekamori Hunter”, and it’ll only be going on until February 20. It’s an extremely limited-edition offering; only one per day is available at select restaurants by reservation only. You have to call at least one day ahead of time to make your reservation, and when you do they also ask you to participate in a video-recorded feedback. If you want to gather some friends and challenge this beast, better call the nearest restaurant that offers it soon to make your reservation!

Restaurant Information
Ikinari! Steak Shinjuku Nishiguchi branch / いきなり! ステーキ新宿西口店
Address: Tokyo-to Shinjuku-ku Nishi-shinjuku 1-4-2
Hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. (these are limited hours until March 7)

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