Soy Sauce Village
Discover the taste of real soy sauce
Kagawa Prefecture ranks fifth among Japan’s top soy sauce producing regions, and over half of Kagawa’s soy sauce is produced on Shodoshima Island. During its heyday, there were about 400 soy sauce breweries on the island. These days, you can visit Soy Sauce Village which is unique in Japan for its high concentration of over 20 soy sauce breweries and tsukudani makers (foods preserved in soy sauce).
Walking through Soy Sauce Village, you’ll notice the rich smell of soy sauce wafting through the air. This district, with its rows of nostalgic buildings paneled in black wood, has been designated a “Heritage of Industrial Modernization” by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.
The distinguishing feature of soy sauce from Shodoshima is that it is produced using kioke wooden barrels and traditional methods that have been passed down for 400 years. Currently, only 1% of Japan’s soy sauce is brewed in kioke barrels, and over one third of that soy sauce is produced on Shodoshima. Allowing naturally fermented moromi (unrefined soy sauce) to age slowly in kioke barrels increases flavor and aroma, resulting in a rich soy sauce.
Soy sauce is an essential ingredient in Japanese cooking. In recent years, the real flavor of soy sauce, which can only be achieved by using kioke barrels for brewing, has once again been highly acclaimed, and many fans can be found all over the world.
On Shodoshima, you can take a tour of the breweries run by soy sauce producers Marukin and Yamaroku—no reservations required! Many breweries in Soy Sauce Village sell sweets made with soy sauce, such as soy sauce soft-serve ice cream. If you find a delicious treat as you’re walking around the area, why not give it a try?
- Culinary Adventures