What are the things to take note of while dining in Japan?
After two years of pandemic, Japan is ready to welcome international travellers again starting this week! We know many of you miss the country, especially its food. So today, we will bring you through some Japanese dining etiquette that you might not know.
Traditionally, the Japanese have their meals at low tables and this is still being practised in some restaurants in Japan. With cushions on the tatami floor, shoes have to be removed before stepping on the tatami. Remember not to step onto cushions that are not yours. After being seated, wet towels are usually provided for you to clean your hands before starting your meal. While eating, a rice bowl can be lifted from the table. However, do not shovel food from the bowl into your mouth with chopsticks. Large plates or bowls of other dishes should not be lifted too.
Did you know that slurping your soup or noodles is a sign of appreciation in Japan? It shows that you are enjoying your meal! Slurping noises are allowed, but do not burp or eat with audible munching at the table. Tea should be sipped silently.
Knowing how to use chopsticks properly is important for Japanese etiquette. Here are some rules when using them:
1. Do not stab your rice or food with chopsticks.
2. Do not pass food from chopstick to chopstick.
3. Do not play around with your chopsticks.
After finishing your meal, everything should be returned to how it was at the beginning. It is a good manner to place the lids back on the dishes and put your chopsticks back on the chopstick rest or in its paper holder.