Fukushima Prefecture (Japan)
Family-run Koda Farms is passionate about rice

DOS PALOS, Calif. — Bagged rice may look like a mundane commodity, a bit incongruous at a local farmers market. But one taste of the variety grown by Koda Farms — with attractive, uniform kernels, alluring fragrance, soft texture and a rich, sweet flavor — makes clear that rice can be a delicacy well worth pursuing. "Their brown rice is different from what is produced in Japan, but has its own unique, nutty flavor," said Sonoko Sakai, a locally based cooking teacher who frequently travels to Japan and represents traditional Japanese rice growers in the United States. Coincidentally, Sakai's grandfather and Keisaburo Koda emigrated to the United States in 1908 on the same boat from the...