A few years back, we visited Hōshi, a hotel located in Komatsu, Japan, which holds the distinction of being the 2nd oldest hotel in the world, and “the oldest still running family business in the world.” Built in 718 AD, Hōshi has been operated by the same family for 46 consecutive generations.
It’s hard to imagine. But it’s true. Once established, Hōshi would have to wait another 500 years before soy sauce came to Japan and could be served to its guests. According to the National Geographic video above, a buddhist monk traveled from China to Yuasa, Japan in the 13th century. And there he began producing soy sauce, fermenting soy beans, wheat, salt and water. That tradition continues to this day. This fascinating short film by Mile Nagaoka gives you a good glimpse into this timeless process.
Would you like to support the mission of Open Culture? Please consider making a donation to our site. It’s hard to rely 100% on ads, and your contributions will help us continue providing the best free cultural and educational materials to learners everywhere.