Japanese Chopstick Etiquette – 18 Taboos You Should Know

japanese chopstick etiquette

Using proper etiquette is an important thing in Japan. Here is an introduction to Japanese chopstick etiquette. There are some taboos you need to know!

1. Sakasabashi   逆さ箸 (さかさばし)

Holding chopsticks upside down

2. Mayoibashi   迷い箸(まよいばし)

Hovering chopsticks over all dishes and hesitated about which food to take

3. Saguribashi   探り箸(さぐりばし)

Using chopsticks to check if some food is left inside the soup/sauce

4. Sashibashi   刺し箸(さしばし)

Stabbing food with chopsticks to pick it up

5. Yosebashi   寄せ箸(よせばし)

Using chopsticks to drag the bowl/ plate to the front

6. Watashibashi   渡し箸(わたしばし)

Resting chopsticks on the bowl in the middle of the meal. It carries the meaning “I have finished”

7.Hashiwatashi   箸渡し(はしわたし)

Passing food from one pair of chopsticks to another pair of chopsticks

8. Sashibashi   指し箸(さしばし)

Pointing people with chopsticks

9. Namidabashi   涙箸(なみだばし)

Sauce dripping from the food

10. Yokobashi   横箸(よこばし)

Using chopstick as a spoon to eat

11. Tatebashi   立て箸(たてばし)

Standing chopsticks on rice or food. Japanese only do this while praying to Gods or people who have passed away.

12. Ukebashi   受け箸(うけばし)

Holding chopsticks while asking/ordering for one more serving of food

13. Araibashi   洗い箸(あらいばし)

“Washing” chopsticks in sauce or soup

14. Kamibashi   噛み箸(かみばし)

Biting chopsticks

15. Neburibashi 舐り箸(ねぶりばし)

Licking chopsticks

16. Jikabashi   直箸(じかばし)

Using own chopsticks to take dishes while there is already a pair of “public” chopsticks for the dish

17. Hanebashi   撥ね箸(はねばし)

Moving away the food you don’t like with chopsticks in order to get the one behind it

18. Nininbashi   二人箸(ににんばし)

Two person using chopsticks to grib the same thing

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