[Types of Miso in Japan]

Miso is an indispensable seasoning for the Japanese table, but you probably know that there are various differences between regions. You may have heard of Saikyo miso and Hatcho miso in particular, but what are the differences between these two types of miso?

There are different categories of miso, which are determined by the type of malted rice (rice, barley, beans, etc.), color (white, red, light, etc.) depending on the degree of maturity, saltiness (sweet, dry, etc.), and where the miso was made (Shinshu, Tokai, Saikyo, etc.). When you look at miso sold in supermarkets, it is often classified by color, such as red miso or white miso, but in some cases, the name is determined by the region where the miso was produced.

So, what kind of miso is produced in which region?

Types of koji
Rice miso: Made from soybeans, rice koji, and salt, rice miso is the most widely produced miso in Japan. It is widely produced from Hokkaido to Honshu.
Barley miso: Made from soybeans, barley koji, and salt, barley miso has a distinct barley aroma. It is mainly produced in Kyushu, Shikoku, and Chugoku regions.
Mame miso: Made from soybeans and salt, this miso is characterized by its umami and astringent flavors that develop after a long period of aging. It is mainly produced in the Chukyo region, including Aichi and Mie prefectures.

Color Types
Shiro-miso: Mild, with a short maturation period and less saltiness. It is produced in the Chugoku and Kinki regions.
Aka-miso: Well-aged, salty and rich. It is produced throughout Japan.
Light-colored miso: Ochre-colored miso with a saltier taste than white miso. Most commonly found in Shinshu miso, it is produced nationwide.

Which miso is your favorite? Yaki onigiri (grilled rice balls) made with your favorite miso is excellent. Pork saikyo yaki is also irresistible. And for storing miso, we recommend Noda Horo's Square Stocker with a Lid, which is highly sealed and easy to take out for frequent use. Please take a look.

Rikucho Ogasawara's Onigiri Iron Plate
Rikucho Ogasawara's Fish Pan
Hasami's Plate
Noda Horo's Square Stocker with a Lid