A Sip of Adda

Global Pantry: Sukanta’s Picks

Learn about our owner’s favorite featured pantry products from around the world!

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A Little Taste of Japan

November 6, 2020

The Global Pantry section of our online and in-store bazaar is a special addition fueled by our owner, Sukanta Nag’s passion for delicious global cuisine. Having traveled all over the world and tasted food so good that just the sound of the dish could make your mouth water, Sukanta wanted to find a way to make those flavors accessible to Adda customers. We have created a selection of specialty pantry items from 8 different countries, items that you wouldn’t typically find in a U.S. grocery store.

This blog is the first in a series of features of some of those products from each country. Through the words of Sukanta, you’ll get to learn why we chose the countries and the products within them, and even read some travel stories of the first time Sukanta tried his favorite dishes. To find any of the products mentioned in this blog, as well as the rest of our Global Pantry offerings, shop online or in-store at Adda Bazaar.


Japan is one of the most interesting places on Mother Earth, especially for cuisine. Everybody in Japan takes their food extremely seriously. It’s almost a joke in Japan, especially Tokyo, that you have to pay money to find bad food. It doesn’t exist. From the fancy restaurants to a store, to the underground food market, to the food trucks, the level of food; the quality; the preciseness; the ingredients; it’s maybe some of the best in the world. A Japanese person just takes their food very seriously and it shows. They are some of the people in the world that live the longest. 

Luckily for me, I was able to travel to Japan many times. And not only had I read about it, heard about it, saw it on TV, I was able to lead that life. Eating through the street to the fanciest place, what I learned about Japanese food culture is, everything they put in their mouth has to be thoughtfully-sourced. They care about where it’s grown, its season, and its production. Some techniques are hundreds of years old. [For example,] how they make their salt is very unique compared to salt-making in other parts of the world. 

So then the question is why do we have what we have? Everything we picked, we partner with Alex, owner of MOLA. He set some criteria for us: 

  1. Let’s find items that are household items in Japan, items that families would regularly use for their meals.
  2. They should be from unique regions of the country; the items are not from just one part of Japan.
  3. You cannot find these items in the grocery store. These are meant to be specialty pantry items for the home.

One of our feature items from Japan is the Suzu Shio. Suzu Shio is a rich and full tasting sea salt, and is one of the best from Japan. It comes from Noto Peninsula, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan. Sea water from this region is known as some of the cleanest in coastal Japan. The Noto Peninsula reaches far out into the Japan Sea from the north coast of central Honshu, the main island of the country. This is where the warm current and cold current of the sea collide, bringing saltier water to this region. 

Suzu Shio is made by a very unique process that was developed by Shinkai Shio Sangyo Company. The clean sea water is sprayed over bamboo blinds, which are hung from the ceiling and reach to the floor. While the salt water runs down along the blinds, some moisture evaporates, leaving the salt to be collected.

Be sure to visit Adda Bazaar to explore our Global Pantry items, and subscribe to A Sip of Adda to keep up with more of Sukanta’s favorites featured items in the next few blogs!

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Takesumi Shio