Christmas is not a national holiday in Japan, but plenty of Americans celebrate the holiday in their homes, or at Japanese restaurants. Japanese New Year is celebrated from December 31 st to January 1 st , just like in America. Here is a look at the holiday season in Japan.
Japanese Christmas Traditions
Both Japanese and American people celebrate Christmas in Japan, though they do it in different ways. Americans may hold traditional Christmas parties, dinners, or gift exchanges in their homes, or at a Japanese steakhouse or cocktail lounge. Japanese people have adopted many American Christmas traditions, but have modified them to be uniquely Japanese. They celebrate Christmas Eve by eating Christmas cakes, or having a romantic date at a fancy Japanese restaurant or hotel. Japanese businesses decorate with trees, ornaments, and lights.
Typical New Year’s Eve Activities
New Year’s Eve, celebrated on December 31 st , is one of the most important holidays in Japan. It’s customary to visit a shrine or temple in Japan on New Year’s Eve to pray, eat, and socialize. The temples ring 108 bells at midnight to symbolize the 108 human sins. People may travel to visit loved ones and be with them on New Year’s Day. Children are traditionally given small envelopes of money. Families may hold a banquet or luncheon in their home on New Year’s Eve.
New Year’s Day in Japan
Most business close on December 31 st , and reopen on January 3 rd to allow families to spend time together. Families eat traditional Japanese food and socialize in their homes. On January 2 nd , it’s tradition to watch the Emperor of Japan speak at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. The palace is only open to the public on January 2 nd and December 23 rd .
If you’re interested in experiencing Japanese customs, Japanese dining, and authentic Japanese food in San Jose, visit us at Genji Japanese Steakhouse and Cocktails. We serve delicious Japanese food, from traditional sushi to teppanyaki-style meals cooked on our hibachi grill. To make a reservation at our Japanese restaurant, call us today at (408) 453-8120.
If you’ve ever eaten delicious Japanese food prepared on a hibachi grill, you may be interested in learning about the history of hibachi cooking. Hibachis originated in Japan, and then found their way to the United States. Hibachi grilling is now practiced in Japanese restaurants that serve authentic teppanyaki-style dishes. Here’s a look at how the Hibachi grilling tradition evolved.
Early Japanese Hibachis
Historians believe that the earliest hibachis were developed in Japan between 794 and 1185 A.D. They were originally made from wood and clay, but later were crafted out of metal, ceramic, and porcelain. They became highly ornate and decorative over time. Traditional hibachis were heated with charcoal, and were only used as small heating devices, not as hibachi grills. It wasn’t until they came to America that they began being used as grills.
Hibachi Grills in America
In America, “hibachi” is a term that is primarily used to describe a hibachi grill. When these grills were originally brought to America, their name was changed from “shichirin” to “hibachi” because it was believed to be easier to pronounce. They look similar to historic Japanese hibachis, and are used in homes and in Japanese restaurants to prepare both American and Japanese food. These grills are typically very small and portable, and are still heated using charcoal.
Modern Hibachi Grills and Teppanyaki-Style Japanese Dining
Hibachi-style and teppanyaki-style Japanese food are incredibly popular menu items at Japanese steakhouses and Japanese restaurants. Chefs prepare Japanese food on a large hibachi grill directly in front of diners, and the experience is often an exciting spectacle. Many different types of traditional Japanese food can be prepared teppanyaki-style on a hibachi grill, from meat and seafood to vegetables, noodles, and rice.
If you want to experience authentic Japanese teppanyaki in San Jose, visit us at Genji Japanese Steakhouse and Cocktails. Our chefs have been preparing delicious Japanese food for years, and you can enjoy your meal in our beautiful Japanese dining room, or our elegant cocktail lounge. To learn more about our menu, call us today at (408) 453-8120.
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