Chopstick Do’s and Don’ts – a Japanese Etiquette
Chopsticks, or ohashi (お箸), are an essential item to Japanese dining. Although chopsticks are used in many other countries worldwide, the Japanese manners are known to be quite unique. Master them and dine finely like a local!

PART 1 : The Classic DON’Ts

The etiquettes that must never been broken, are called “嫌い箸” Kirai-bashi, literally meaning“hate-chopsticks”. Breaking these rules can be considered extremely impolite.

1. 寄せ箸 Yose-bashi DON’T use chopsticks to move bowls and containers around the table.

2. 刺し箸 Sashi-bashi NEVER stick your chopsticks upright into your food.

3. 渡し箸 Watashi-bashi DON’T leave your chopsticks lying across your plate or bowl, like a bridge.

4. 迷い箸 Mayoi-bashi DON’T let your chopsticks wonder around, above your foods.

5. 舐り箸 Neburi-bashi NEVER lick or suck onto your chopsticks, or on pieces of food on them.

PART 2 : Rules Mistaken by Locals!

Not all local Japanese people are “Ohashi Masters”– here are some rules that are sometimes even broken by the locals!

1. 返し箸(逆さ箸) Kaeshi-bashi (or Sakasa-bashi) What if you’re dining with a large group of people, and didn’t have extra pairs of chopsticks to serve food? Many Japanese people mistakenly use the ‘clean ends’ of their chopsticks, but this is actually bad manners.

2. Breaking your disposable chopsticks Did you know that there are manners related to breaking apart your wooden chopsticks from convenience stores and take-out restaurants? The 2 things you need to remember are – where to break it, and which direction to break it.

DON’T: Break them vertically, in front of your chest.

DO: Break them horizontally, above your lap.

OpenRice JP Editor
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