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Oh, Boy! It's Soy!

Hodo Soy Beanery opens a new factory in West Oakland


Are you one of those factory geeks who love to take a behind-the-scenes tour to see how things are made? If so, you’ll want to head over to West Oakland for a tour of the new 12,000-square-foot Hodo Soy Beanery factory, starting this month. If not, here’s a little of what you’ll be missing.

• No, that isn’t the employees’ white laundry you see hanging around the production room—it’s yuba. This so-called “sashimi of soy” is made by skimming off the layer of fat and protein that rises to the surface of heated soymilk and then draping the skins over metal rods to dry.

• Some serious foodie connections. Along with owner/tofu master Minh Tsai, the soy company boasts the founders of Scharffen Berger chocolate and Cowgirl Creamery as investors.

• In addition to its freshly made soy, tofu, and soy milk, Hodo Soy has a quirky mix of ready-to-eat prepared foods, including soy omelets, kung pao yuba salad, and tofu jerky. The staff is even experimenting with a tofu version of a product many consider the antisoy: bacon.

Hodo Soy products are sold at Diablo Foods in Lafayette. For information about factory tours, call (510) 464-2977, or go to hodosoy.com

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