“Izakaya” – The Joy of Japanese Drinking Culture
Japanese people truly enjoy after-work drinking and this has become a vital part of their working culture. Considered a social aspect of work, “Nomikai”, a drinking party where everyone is seated at a large-sized table or occupying a separated section of a restaurant, is usually preferred by Japanese workers of all classes to encourage a healthy relationship with their bosses, co-workers, and friends.
Bringing a client to a fine dining restaurant for some tasty menus and refreshing drinks has also become routine among business people as they aim at successful business cooperation.
Admittedly, nomikai is synonymous with “synthetic lubricant” that helps smoothen and accelerate the operations of the business and working systems in the Japanese society.
In addition, drinking together can reveal characteristics of a person. Generosity and friendliness are always expected among drinkers. Seating positions are very important among business people in Japan. It indicates an individual’s business status, for instance, the highest ranking person will be seated at the head of the table. Similarly, when drinking alcoholic beverages, it is customary to serve each other rather than keep pouring the beverage into one’s own glass. Japanese people are very serious about dining etiquettes as they believe that desirable table manners can truly impress their business partners. br>
Inspired by the popularity of the nomikai party, izakaya is noticeably different from conventional pubs and bars. This favorite hangout place offers a variety of inexpensive dishes and drinks in a casual and relaxing atmosphere. With a perfect combination of traditional Japanese designs and modern décor items, many izakaya restaurants prefer to have mellow instrumental music whispering in the background, while business people often reserve “Koshitsu”, a private dining room arranged for a specific group of customers, to enjoy their private talks and relaxation.
Several izakaya restaurants present “Nomihodai”, an all-you-can-drink offer where a customer can enjoy whatever drinks for a fixed price and period of time. This mouth-watering campaign can be ideal for both party-loving people and routine drinkers, despite knowing they can get sozzled easily.
A variety of alcoholic beverages are served at izakaya. Working people apparently enjoy drinking beer, soju, hot or cold sake, and hi-ball whiskey. For those who love whiskey, they can heat up the night with whiskey on the rocks or whiskey with soda or pure water. Meanwhile, some traditional drinkers prefer to have their soju mixed with green tea, oolong tea, and jasmine tea.
Izakaya also serves “Sawa” and “Chuhai”, fruit-flavored liqueurs with 3-5% of alcohol. The alcoholic beverages are deliciously refreshing and very popular among ladies. Mild drinkers can alternatively enjoy flavorful cocktails if they please.
For those who dislike alcohol, they can try a smooth sensation of alcohol-free beer and other delectable drinks.
Let’s take a look at toothsome menus. Izakaya restaurants offer a wide selection of exceptional Japanese appetizers, varying in yakitori (grilled chicken on stick), tsukune (seasoned meat), okonomiyaki (Japanese pizza), chijimi (Korean spicy pancake), teppanyaki (hot pan barbecue), sashimi (fresh raw meat or fish), Japanese soybean, and French fries.
At izakaya, everyone can enjoy plenty of tantalizing dishes and awesome beverages in a fun-filled party atmosphere. Izakaya is always the first choice of a place to hang out after a tiring day. Aside from partying, the trendy Japanese dive bar can also be ideal for various special occasions, varying in welcoming a new employee, celebrating a job promotion, and entertaining business clients.
Izakaya unveils Japanese working culture in almost every dimension. For some people, nomikai is just an ordinary night party. They are totally wrong. The drink-the-night-away party is implicitly held to foster good relationship among working individuals as well as promote goodwill and trust between business partners. A solemn-looking chief executive who acts aggressively in the morning can turn into a funny red-faced uncle after having a few drinks with his co-workers. This thing can usually be seen at izakaya.
If you are feeling worn-out after a hard-working day, dropping by an izakaya restaurant for some sparkling drinks and delicious appetizers is never a bad idea. Do you really have to fly to Japan? No, you don’t need to travel that far. Izakaya restaurants are available in Thailand now. Top izakaya restaurants are opened variously in the heart of Bangkok, particularly around business districts such as Phrom Phong and Thong Lor, which are often frequented by Japanese business people and travellers.