#KeepWonderlusting Yoshio Okumura - Preserving Japan's culinary heritage Part1

Travel can provide us with life-changing encounters, and even though we may not be able to travel right now, we here at wondertrunk & co. want to continue sharing some of these exciting moments, and to continue inspiring each other to grow and explore.

Yoshio Okumura – Preserving Japan’s culinary heritage Part1


Meet Mr. Yoshio Okumura, one of the last remaining keepers of an ancient culinary tradition known as “funazushi”. Yoshio was born on Okishima, the only inhabited island within Lake Biwa (Shiga Prefecture), Japan’s largest freshwater lake. Inhabitants of this island (including Yoshio) have long enjoyed funazushi as a local delicacy, served at gatherings and often alongside plentiful cups of sake.

This unique food is thought to be one of the predecessors to modern sushi, made by salting and fermenting “nigorobuna”, a species of flavorful goldfish endemic to the lake.

The effects of the recent coronavirus pandemic are far reaching, affecting even the isolated community of Okishima. As he eyes the future, we talked with Yoshio about how his thinking is shifting regarding his relationship with his home island, and the interlinked cycle of the lake environment, the local fishing industry, and the country’s last remaining producers of funazushi.

Keep enriching your life journey, #KeepWonderlusting