Sushi has been an international dish that we can find in many parts of the world. However, some of us who never really ate sushi in Japan might not eat it in the right way. We might never taste sushi in the best way possible, until you finish reading this article…
The sushi chefs in Japan has authoritarian vibe. Thus, some foreigners think they’re either rude or intimidating. Hence some high-class restaurants have a policy called “ichigen-san okotowari”, which means first-time customers are not allowed. Luckily, traditional sushi restaurants generally welcome everyone. But with one condition, the customer must follow the chef’s instructions.
Those instructions are act the best ways to enjoy sushi at the fullest! Here are six rules you will hear from many Japanese sushi chefs:
1. Don’t eat with chopsticks
Most of us eat sushi by using chopsticks. That’s because, well, it’s Japanese food. We supposed to use chopsticks, right?
Wrong. Sushi is actually quite fragile, so it’s easy to break or crumble when we use chopsticks. Thus, Japanese sushi chefs always instruct their customers to use their own hands, feel the sushi, and get it into their mouths faster.
2. Eat fast
We probably spend an hour at a sushi restaurant. Yet, sushi is actually fast food that should be eaten only around 10 to 15 minutes. Japanese people in the past didn’t even sit down to eat sushi.
Really, every second counts when eating sushi. Freshly sliced fish and warm rice are best to eat immediately! So, don’t be surprised when the sushi chef barks at you, “Eat now!”. They also make sushi one by one, and force you to eat within seconds. But they actually have a good intention.
3. Eat sushi for lunch
Sushi has plenty of rice. You can be full, and energised to face the day. Some sushi chefs said that perhaps lunch is the only proper time to eat sushi.
Should you still want to eat it for dinner, you better ask the chef to put less rice in each piece. Maybe, this is one of many reasons why most Japanese people have ideal weights.
4. Smell the sushi in the narrow restaurant
There’s a reason behind seemingly narrow sushi restaurant. It might be small, low-ceilinged place. But it helps you to smell the sushi. In order to have the whole sushi experience, you must touch and smell it. The smell of fish triggers your appetite. Thanks to the minimalist place that captures the flavour.
5. Let the chef do everything for you
Usually, you’re the one who add soy sauce and wasabi into the sushi. However, authentic sushi restaurants in Japan don’t let you do that. The chef is the one who put the sauce and wasabi for you. You’re not allowed to add them by yourself, because most likely you will ruin the good sushi.
6. Eat sushi with sake
Sushi chefs know the perfect combination: sushi and sake. It’s not that you drink sake after you eat sushi. You are supposed to mix them in your mouth!
First, chew the sushi a bit but don’t swallow. It will release some of the fish’s flavour. Then, you drink some sake. It will give you many delicious flavours you won’t forget!