MOVIE LIFE KYOTO is a video series which aims to introduce Japanese culture to foreigners in a light-hearted and humorous fashion. With English narration and Japanese subtitles, they’re filled with little factoids and hilariously on-point observations that will be of interest to foreign visitors and a source of much ‘that’s so true!’ amusement for Japanese people, too!

The first series of videos, titled How to enjoy Japanese (actually spelled Japanse here, but we’ll forgive them the absent e) sake & shochu, is all about how Japanese people enjoy alcohol, and also shines a light on the idiosyncrasies of izakaya that may be baffling to a first-time visitor.

First let’s start with an introduction to izakaya, Japanese eateries that serve food made for sharing along with plenty of alcohol, similar to a Western pub. There’s also an explanation of oshibori and the etiquette when using one. Remember, salarymen are not always the best example to follow.

Edamame are beans often served as a starter, and they go great with beer. See, Japanese people love edamame too!

Atsukan is the name for nihonshu (sake) when served hot. Check out the great Engrish in the list of different temperatures the alcohol can be served at.

Kanpai is said in Japan as a toast, similar to ‘cheers’, although it often turns into something far more lengthy. As someone who has been to work-related drinking events in Japan, this one really tickled me.

When you arrive at an izakaya you may be served with otooshi before you place your main order to take the edge off your hunger.

Waribashi is a word that comes from ‘waru’ meaning to break and ‘hashi’ meaning chopsticks. Japanese people always seem to get that clean break, but somehow my foreign fingers still mess it up every time.

Did you learn anything new from these videos? Let us know in the comments section below.

Source: YouTube via Japaaan Magazine, Movie Life Kyoto
Top Image: YouTube