Customers seek childhood flavors at decades-old store before it closes

Updated 2017-04-21 13:30:49 Ecns.cn
A 61-year-old grocery store in downtown Beijing.

A 61-year-old grocery store in downtown Beijing.

(ECNS) – Many residents are flocking to a 61-year-old grocery store in downtown Beijing, after learning that it will be closed amid an ongoing renovation of the neighborhood.

The store, which first opened in 1956, is located on Yangtao Road. A 10-minute walk westward leads to Yongdingmenwai Street on the city's central north-south axis.

The store appears ordinary and even a little shabby, but the pleasant aroma of soy sauce in the air tells passersby that it has its stories.

Homemade soy sauce and sesame paste are the products most favored by customers, according to the store's owner, a man surnamed Wang. However, he said he hadn't made much money from the small business over the years as he had kept a low profile.

Recently, many customers have been coming to the store after reading reports of its fate, he said.

Even today, Wang still uses an old abacus. "I've been doing things this way since I was an apprentice, so I keep going like this no matter how many years have passed," he said, adding that the store has never been renovated.

One citizen made a special trip to the store just to record its last days with his camera.

Another customer, referring to the store's soy sauce, said: "We're familiar with these things and they'll be gone. Here I can always find the flavor of my childhood, a flavor that has never changed over the past decades."

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