Did you know that local miso existed in Portland? I didn't although I did know that plenty of tofu is made in our fair city. In fact I wrote a story about local tofu a few years ago for The Portland Tribune.
I met up with husband and wife Earnest and Sumiko Migaki this afternoon of Jorinji Miso Products (Soy Beam Jozo Company) at the Seven Corners New Seasons. They've been producing local miso since 1996 in Southeast Portland and source all of their non genetically modified soybeans (they've refused GMO from day-one) from Ota Tofu in Southeast Portland.
What's in the cellophane package next to the miso? Tiny cherry blossom shaped miso butter cookies made with organic eggs, unbleached flour, butter, sesame seeds, sansho and, of course, Jorinji Miso. My friend just stopped by the house to say hello and tried them. After the first one he asked where he could buy them. I told him he was out of luck, that they're only giving them to would-be purveyors (and very lucky writers) with samples of their white, red, dark red, low sodium, and katsuo miso. After hearing that he said a local restaurant should serve them as an after-dinner treat with the bill. I hope that someone does. They're buttery, salty, roasty toasty and end with just a smidge of sweetness. Not much though. That's why they're so good.
Earnest and Sumiko's small batch miso is delicious. I tried some for the first time from Anzen Importers a few weeks ago and got in touch with the couple right after.
Jorinji Miso is stocked in several local New Seasons Markets, City Market, Limbo, Uwajimaya, People's Co-op, Alberta Co-op, Anzen Importers and several other markets. It's also served at Biwa and Saucebox.