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Izakaya 居酒屋 as Japanese culture

Izakaya Japanese language school culture

"Izakaya is fun."

Izakaya is a popular place to enjoy drinks and light meals with friends and colleagues. Shops usually have a casual atmosphere and offer a variety of drinks and food.

An izakaya is a place where you can eat and drink in a relaxed atmosphere. There are high-end facilities, but they are generally reasonably priced. Izakaya are common throughout the country and tend to gather near train and subway stations. Japanese beer, sake and shochu are standard items on the drink menu and have non-alcoholic options. There are usually a variety of food choices, often composed primarily of traditional Japanese cuisine. The food is intended to be shared among the members of the group. The cost of meals varies depending on the type of facility and the number of customers ordering, but it is usually around 2,000 to 7,000 yen per person.

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Traditional taverns have table and counter seats. There may also be tatami areas where customers must take off their shoes. There are many privately owned facilities, but since around 1975, corporate izakaya chains have provided convenient, if not genuine, alternatives. With its low price, set menu and standard interior, it is popular with young customers, women and families. Some have menus with pictures and English explanations.

After the customer is guided to their seat, the staff will arrange the plates and chopsticks. The first step is usually to order an alcoholic beverage. Small moon appetizers are often served with the first drink. It may be free, but generally it costs around 300 to 500 yen, and a seat fee will be charged.

A place where plates, chopsticks, paper napkins, soy sauce plates, and appetizers are lined up.

When you receive your drink, clink the glass and cheer (Kampai) to relax. When you’re ready to order food, raise your hand to attract staff (some facilities make this easier by equipping the table with a call button). Apart from the table menu, items and prices are often written on the wall display. There are also some chains that customers can order using the touchpad menu.

The choice depends on the restaurant, but there are many years of favorites such as cold tofu, fried fried chicken, sashimi, edamame, and yakitori. There are also local and seasonal dishes.

Clockwise from top left: Umeboshi chu-hi. Cold tofu topped with green onions and dried bonito flakes. Fried chicken; pickles and sake; spinach and beer with dried bonito flakes. Fried horse mackerel and cabbage.

The sashimi in the foreground includes yellowtail (amberjack), tuna, and ark shell from the left. It is served with wasabi on a bed of finely chopped radish.

Some izakaya still serve sake in wooden containers.

In the Edo period (1603-1868), a standing stick called Sakaya appeared. These became known as taverns and began selling simple snacks such as simmered vegetables and oden pots.

Since there were no glass bottles at the time, the brewery placed an order with the tavern in large wooden barrels. The owner lined up the barrels near the entrance and served drinks in a wooden weighing container called Masu. At that time, the main reason for going to an izakaya was drinking, and a secondary concern was food. The facility has become a favorite drinking place for the general Japanese.

You can order the draft beer (draft beer) or bottled beer (bottle beer) provided in the glass mug and pour it yourself. Traditionally, sake is served warm or at room temperature, but chilled sake is also popular. Shochu is a distilled liquor made from rice, barley, sweet potatoes, etc. They can be drunk on rocks or mixed with cold or hot water. When you mix shochu with fruit juice, flavored syrup, and soda, it is called chu-hi or sour. It’s fun to compare different brands across the country, as sake and shochu varieties can vary widely depending on the climate and manufacturing method.















お客様は、ガラスのジョッキで提供される生ビール(nama bīru)や、自分で注ぐ瓶ビール(bin bīru)を注文することができます。伝統的に日本酒は熱燗または常温で提供されるが、冷やした霊酒も人気がある。正中は米、大麦、サツマイモなどを原料とする蒸留酒で、ロックで飲むこともできる。ロックで飲んだり、冷水やお湯に混ぜて飲んだりすることができる。また、フルーツジュースやフレーバーシロップ、ソーダなどと混ぜて飲むと「チューハイ」や「サワー」と呼ばれ、日本酒や焼酎と同じように、日本酒や焼酎にも様々な種類があります。日本酒や焼酎は気候や製法によって品種が大きく異なるため、全国の銘柄を飲み比べてみるのも楽しい。

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