Pacific Rogue Wagyu, named for the ocean it abuts and the river that runs nearby, has been an entirely family-run operation since Robert Myron Knox established it in 1932. Today, his millennial great-grandchildren Jeffrey Knox and Felicia Knox Walker, together with their parents Scott and Karen, are carrying on the tradition of producing delicious steak on the Oregon coast.
But this century there has been a delicious twist in the Knoxes’ tradition, in the form of a new breed of cattle. The Knox family had been raising Angus -- a classic American breed -- for generations when, in 1992, Scott Knox decided to take a gamble on a hunch of his and raise one of the first Wagyu cows to ever live outside Japan.
Scott holding the first Wagyu cow ever born on their farm. She was only the fifth Wagyu cow ever born outside Japan.
At the time, Wagyu beef (which comes from the Japanese Kuroge Washu breed) was just beginning to catch on stateside, and steakophiles from Seattle to Manhattan were going wild for its sweet, buttery taste and exquisite marbling. Scott Knox wanted to raise 100% genetically pure Wagyu on his Oregon ranch, as well as work on a cross between Wagyu and Angus, which he thought would preserve the deep beefy flavor of an Angus steak while adding an intense dose of marbling from the Wagyu.
Today, the Knoxes are considered a pioneer family where American Wagyu is concerned, raising delicious Wagyu-Angus steak along with Fullblood Wagyu.
Through multiple generations of land stewardship, the Knoxes have also turned their fertilizer-free, coastal ranch into a biodiverse habitat for elk, deer, butterflies, and pollinators, and each year they write environmentally conscious grazing plans with guidance from the National Resource Conservation Service. They’ve even won a conservation award for their dedication. The cows at Pacific Rogue are just as well cared for, benefiting from the ocean breezes that come over the bluffs, and never receiving antibiotics or growth hormones.