The climate of this area was so bad -with high mountains, much different from that of the South-west Japan, that farmers could not grow good grains. Instead of eating cereal grains they had to live on barnyard grasses or noodles. In those dire living conditions our ancestors tried to think of ways to cook and make delicious dishes by using a "poor kind of noodle". Because of the poverty they would keep telling the people how they could make good soup, how to beat the noodles well and how to make good side dishes. In this way they made SOBA an important grain noodle. Noodles don't have to always be thin and long. Many kinds of dishes are made with soba; such as rolling it into balls or by kneading, even making triangles and wrapping the soba with "Miso" .
Because of the poor farming soil it was difficult to raise crops of grain so it was very valuable and stored with care. Eating SOBA was a mealtime entertainment for people and so they served their guests a lot of food and especially SOBA! They would say. . . "Eat more and more". . . but even when the guest would say "I'M full, I can't eat any more", the host would serve more anyway. If a person didn't accept another serving then the Host was disappointed and think that the soba wasn't good. It is a Japanese tradition to serve more than usual and the same custom still remains, to give more servings of rice, mochi (rice cake) or SOBA.
In this way 'Wanko-Soba' has been served in Hidehira-wan - only a mouthful of soba at one time; using the best kinds of soba. There are many side dishes like Tuna-Sashimi (raw fish). chicken or mushrooms with grated radish which is served also. It was after the war ended that 'Wanko-Soba' became popular all over Japan, and here in Morioka. 'WANK0=YA' which is near the Yonoji Bridge began doing a good business. This custom related to the characteristics of the warm-hearted people is continuing. The hostess will keep putting another mouthful of soba into your cup until YOU put the lid on -which means "MAITTA" (enough). Wanko-soba is becoming more and more popular among the visitors who come to Morioka.