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 Chopsticks are standard utensils in some countries of Asia.
While to an outsider every chopstick they see may look the same but if you have
used them, you would notice the differences. If chopsticks from China, Japan
and Korea when placed side to side you can notice few features that are unique.
If you want to buy a chopstick or just want to know more about chopsticks in general,
this post is just for you. Now let’s dive deep into the part on how they are
different and why.



Japanese chopsticks, also known as ‘Hashi’ in Japanese,
is the shortest of them all. They are placed horizontally in front of individuals
on top of a small stand known as hashioki. Since Japanese people have
separate palate for individual, they have smaller chopsticks. The tops of the
chopstick are exceptionally pointy as Japanese people tend to consume more fried
fishes, it helps in picking the bones. The way an individual uses chopstick is very important in Japan. Children
are made to practice with beans by their teachers or parents. When in a Japanese
dinner table, you are not supposed to point at or fumble with foods, those are
deemed as improper. When there is no communal chopstick present, the other end
of the chopstick could be used to move food. One of the most crucial point to
be noted is that the chopsticks shouldn’t be crossed on the table, as it symbolizes
death in their culture.



Korean chopsticks are mostly metal since it is more
durable than a wooden one but its wooden version does exits. During Joseon era,
the royalty would use silver chopsticks since its oxidizing properties could often
help them detect whether the food made for the royalties had been tampered
with or not. They are flatter along its cross section and a tad longer than the Japanese
ones. They place their chopsticks on the side of the table over a rest vertically in front
of individuals. When a Japanese visits Korean restaurant they might have
problem handling the metal ones since they are one the heavier side, they can
always ask for a wooden one instead. In earlier days, chopsticks varied with social
status. Chopsticks used in court were made up of gold, silver or cloisonne,
while commoners would use those made up of brass or wooden.



Onto the last variation, Chinese chopsticks. They are
the longest of them all. In a Chinese restaurant people are seated in a round
table and the side dishes are scattered all around the table, hence one needs to pick up foods
from different parts of the table and that’s the reason why they are so long. They
are round, thick and have a blunt top end unlike the other two. And that is because
Chinese people tend to eat greasy food and the thick and blunt top ensures that
the food doesn’t slip away. When you connect the two pieces, you’ll find that the
top (narrow) ends don’t touch. This might be a bit problematic when having
ramen for some people. In Chinese culture, it is improper for one to tap chopsticks at the edge of
a bowl as this act is used by beggars to attract attention.


On a closing note, its not what kind of chopstick you
use matter, yes you can choose any one of them as per your liking, but it important
to understand and respect the culture by applying proper etiquette while using
them in a restaurant.

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