Japan Culture: Traditional Food, Drinks & Arts You Should Know


People have always been fascinated by the culture and traditions of Japan. And we thought we’d share some of its interesting food, drink and art here!

A shot of downtown Japan with a map of Japan

The Land of the Rising Sun is an archipelago and string of islands; Japan is a wonderful country. When Japan opened its international trade to the world in 1853, visitors couldn’t get enough of the country. Japan is an ever-changing country which makes them one of the most developed countries, adhering to pop culture, values ​​and traditions and the many gastronomical creations of food and art never cease to amaze us. If you are a fan of Japan, you are in the right place!

One word: umami

Japan is your heaven on earth for those who love to eat. The Japanese are careful about the food they eat and prepare. Traditional Japanese cuisine emphasizes its ingredients, methods, ingredients and cooking methods. In Japanese cooking, a sixth taste was introduced to our palate, the magical taste of “umami”. And the best part of Japanese food is the way they are presented – in harmony with the work of art.

1. Sushi

Variety of sushi on a plate with rose ganja ginger, soy sauce, wasabi and chopsticks

Sushi is a food icon in Japan and even in the world. It is said that the Japanese back in the day looked for a way to preserve raw fish by preserving it in fermented rice. From there, sushi was born. This dish is traditionally prepared with vinegared rice, sometimes sugar and salt and other ingredients. There are several types of sushi, two of which are Urumaki and Temaki. Many may think that making sushi is difficult, but we guarantee you, it is far from expected. Keep reading to find out!

2. Wagyu

Wagyu beef slices topped with chives, lemon, mushrooms and parsley on banana leaves

We assume you’ve already heard of Wagyu, but what is Wagyu? Wagyu is one of four Japanese cattle breeds: Japanese Brown, Japanese Polled, Japanese Black, and Japanese Shorthorn. The word Wagyu refers to the marbling of the beef—the layers of fat you can see in the meat, making it tender, juicy, and wonderfully flavorful.

3. Miso soup

A bwl of miso soup with tofu and green vegetables

Miso soup is a Japanese staple that is incorporated into many dishes in Japan. It is traditionally made with miso paste as its main ingredient, dashi, vegetables, tofu, abura-age, seafood, fish and many other ingredients can be added as desired. Did you know that miso soup is also best served with sushi? Absolutely!


To be honest, the Japanese love to drink. Drinking is part of their culture to cope and make connections. The Japanese also enjoyed alcohol in the 16th century when sake was first enjoyed, followed by beer in the 17th century. Japanese drinking culture also practices etiquette, such as serving each other and refilling your friend’s glass before it’s empty. And if you’re the type to drink before the party starts, it’s a cultural no-no.

1. Sec

In the background is a small porcelain glass and pouring rice

Also referred to as “Nihonshu”, sake is a traditional Japanese rice wine known worldwide. It is brewed and fermented using Japanese rice, water and koji mold as the three key ingredients of this infamous alcohol. Sake is sweet, non-carbonated and light in color.

2. Matcha

Fine matcha powder next to a cocktail spoon in a glass of matcha drink with a green straw and a matcha bamboo stirrer.

As a part of Japanese tea culture, matcha has its roots in the 12th century. It is traditionally used in tea ceremonies in Japan. However, not all match leaves are used to create these gems. Only the most premium quality matcha leaves are processed by drying and milling before being ground into a fine powder. Matcha has become one of the most requested flavors, especially in bubble tea making and mixology.

3. Bamboo

The Bamboo is a vintage Japanese cocktail from the 1900s consisting of sherry, dry vermouth, fino or oloroso wine, and bitters. This cocktail is usually served and enjoyed as an aperitif.

Japanese art treasures

Japanese arts and crafts are one of the world’s greatest gifts. Every Japanese art is influenced by history, tradition, tradition and culture. It is a facade of various art that is admirable and whimsical. In addition to ceramics and sculpture, Japanese art includes a variety of styles and media.

1. Suminagashi

Suminagashi, or “ink floating”, is a traditional Japanese marble art. The Japanese have used suminagashi for centuries, and it was used as a meditative practice to find peace by calming and focusing one’s mind. This art form is a therapeutic activity done by adding ink one drop at a time to a basin of water. Individual patterns are created by carefully blowing air, using a brush, straw and hair to create gentle movements in it. The patterns produced are carefully transferred to paper or cloth.

2. Origami

Origami creation of bird using patterned paper

Origami is an ancient Japanese art of paper folding. It was first discovered in ancient Japan and continues to be practiced by the Japanese to this day. Origami figures are inspired by life-like figures, from birds to more complex folding techniques. Because of how fun it is to do, origami has created enthusiasts who push the boundaries of paper folding. Thus, using origami to solve innovative and technological problems.

3. Kintsugi

According to art historians, the invention of kintsugi was an accident when a shogun broke his tea bowl. After trying to repair his bowl, local artisans tried to reassemble it, using gold lacquer and giving it a new unique look. From then on, Kintsugi’s art was a sense of regret and acceptance from the perspective of “motonai” and “mushin”. Kintsugi teaches people a very important life lesson that lasts forever. Acceptance, resilience and perseverance are the keys to a meaningful, productive life.

Experience Japanese culture

Three kits by Suminagashi, Sushi Rolling and Kintsugi's Food Craft Experience with DIY kits

There is much to love about Japanese culture and traditions. The country, the people, their skills, cleanliness and quiet, and especially, food, drink and art. Japan is a moment, and we have to experience it. As a team passionate about celebrating culture and heritage, we want to create lasting moments with you. Celebrate and dive deep into Japanese culture with our virtual and in-person experiences Suminagashi, KintsugiAnd Sushi rolling. Prepare yourself for an authentic experience which you are bound to witness!


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