What does soy sauce smell like?

I bought Lee k** Kee's, Urban Platter and Kikkoman's soy sauces. Prior to them, I used to use a different brand of soy sauce which smelled salty and vinegary. So, when I smelled these new sauces, I was immediately taken back by their fruity, wine like smell. I wanted to ask if it's normal for soy sauce to smell like that? Because I found it extremely off-putting and my first thought was that it was spoilt.

  • Posted by: carrots
  • March 19, 2022


drbabs March 21, 2022
I agree that fruity and winy aren’t common soy sauce characteristics. Right now I have San-J tamari lite in my refrigerator, and it smells almost meaty and salty. I like using tamari because it’s gluten free, and I have have friends who can’t eat gluten. Also agree that there’s no point in keeping a condiment that smells bad to you.
HalfPint March 21, 2022
I can't give a general smell because soy sauces all smell and taste different, even among the same brand. There's different ways to brew soy sauce.

Personally, I don't care for a vinegary-tasting soy sauce. To me that tastes like it was improperly stored in a warmer environment. I find that Kikkoman soy sauces are sweeter than Lee Kum Kee. My preference is a cmore salty flavor profile. It all comes down to personal preference. So I agree with @aagersi, if the smell is overpowering for you, you will not like it. Discard and try another brand.
aargersi March 20, 2022
If it smells off putting I’d say throw it out regardless if it’s spoiled or not, you’re not going to like it. I just smelled mine, it doesn’t smell fruity at all, more kind of yeasty / salty. Is salty a smell? You can smell the umami that you also taste.
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