About Japanese Dining
Most people have preconceptions when it comes to Japanese food. Silver screen ideals and miscommunications have created stereotypes of raw fish and rice that were hard to break, however, true Japanese dining is a fascinating and complex artform.
The principles of traditional Japanese dining revolve around the ideas of nature and harmony. All the elements of a meal should be in harmony, the elements of the dish, each of the dishes on the table, and the diner - with the emphasis on nature. Every effort is taken to prevent any of the natural flavours from being masked.
Throughout the course of Japanese history, dining has taken on traditions and rituals beyond anything Western cultures are accustomed to. Each meal is a complete work of art in and of itself, with all the elements coming together to be as pleasing to the eye as to the palate.
Japanese food is also healthy, keeping in line with the emphasis on nature and harmony. Rice is a major part of both the Japanese culture and Japanese food. Also fish and seafood, legumes, noodles, etc.
The most important thing to remember about Japanese dining is to absorb it as a whole - both the look and taste of the food, and the surroundings. Eating at Matsuri is an experience, far more than a meal.