America’s most famous plant-based burger has finally launched in Australia
More than five years after Momofuku chef David Chang named the Impossible Burger as the future of food, plant-based meat has arrived in Australia.
US-based Impossible Foods joins a large group of other global companies vying for a share of the Australian meat substitutes market, including US producer Beyond Meat, which extracts pea protein for its renowned burgers. to be “rare” beet juice.
Impossible Foods, however, uses protein from soybeans and peas, and heme – the iron-containing molecule that gives meat a “meaty” taste.
The private food tech startup launched its fake beef burger in 2016 at Momofuku Nishi in New York City, part of Chang’s noodle empire and hip eateries. Five years and $ 80 million ($ 107 million) has been spent on research and development just to get there. Bill Gates is one of the many funders.
Impossible’s Ground Beef Substitute is available at Grill’d burger stores nationwide starting today, as well as Sydney’s Fried Chicken and Sneaker Store Butter (especially the before- Chatswood and Parramatta stations).
More restaurants will start serving fake meat in Australia and New Zealand in the coming months.
“Our launches in Australia and New Zealand are another important step towards bringing delicious, sustainable options to markets around the world,” Impossible Foods President Dennis Woodside said in a statement.
“Both countries are home to some of the most dedicated meat eaters in the world, and we know they’ll love Impossible Beef.”
So what does it taste like? How does it stack up against Beyond Meat, Australian company V2Foods, and other beef substitute companies that make “better for you, better for the planet” yarn?
I was invited to taste Impossible Beef in the form of an $ 18 cheeseburger at Butter in Chatswood and the stuff is, well, pretty impressive.
Cooked by Butter co-owner Julian Cincotta, the burger patty had a crisp, deeply flavorful crust and a juicy interior that didn’t crumble into cardboard rubble after a few bites like lesser competitors.
Similar to all plant-based meat substitutes, Impossible Beef does not have the delicious mouth-coating qualities of real animal fat, but there is still a heavy umami aftertaste that lingers after the burger. ended. All hail the powers of the heme.
I would bet money folded that most people could still identify Impossible Beef as plant-based in a range compared to real meat patties, but I don’t think many burger fans would be upset by the taste. and neither does the texture. It’s very, very close to something that comes from a cow.
In July, I did a taste test of the most widely available plant-based meat substitutes at the time, and rated the burgers from Beyond Meat and V2Food 4/5 and 3.5 / 5. for taste respectively.
Without Cincotta cooking Beyond and V2 burgers on the same grill yesterday, it’s unfair to mark the Impossible product that I tasted in comparison, but I think it would under proper test conditions as well.
It’s also worth noting that Grill’d and Butter both take delivery of Impossible’s ground “beef” and turn it into patties with additional seasoning, rather than flipping factory-shaped hamburger rings.
Cincotta makes a katsu sandwich with the same minced product and plans to offer an Impossible Meatball Sub and lasagna through their home delivery service. An Impossible Foods pop-up run by Butter is set to launch at The Rocks on November 25.
Whether all this fake meat is actually better for the environment than ranching is debated.
In short, intensive animal agriculture is one of the biggest emitters of greenhouse gases in the world, but plant protein extraction also has an environmental impact. Fake meat is also not necessarily healthier than steak from a sustainably farmed ruminant.
What we can say, however, is that the arrival of Impossible Foods means that the Australian meat substitute market has become much more competitive. Quorn and Sanitarium had better improve their game.