10 Surprises for an Englishman at a Restaurant in China

1: Most people rinse their crockery and chopsticks with the green tea provided at restaurants – a bowl is provided for draining them, even though the crockery is often vacuum packed. Sometimes they drink tea well!


2: At restaurants a bottle of wine is often decanted into several small jugs for easy pouring into glasses thus avoiding the drips

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3: No-one orders individual dishes exclusively for themselves. Everything is shared and laid out on a Lazy Susan. You pick as you eat and respectfully turn the Lazy Susan if you want something on the opposite side of the table.


4: Be prepared to make several personal toasts to individuals at the table throughout meal

5: Be prepared to eat everything on the bone (but not the bone itself) especially the pigs trotters which are very tasty and succulent. Your plate will be full of bones by the end of the meal

6: Your wine glass (and tea-cup) will be on your LHS as you eat with chopsticks in your right hand – unless you’re left-handed of course

7: Be prepared for hot and spicy food in Hunan Province (quite a different sort of spicy to Sichuan dishes)

8: A little box of tiny tissues is provided at restaurants as paper napkins

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9: The person at the far corner of the table (which is round) facing the door is either the special guest or the host who pays for everything. No going Dutch here.

10. A large restaurant will have many individual rooms for parties up to 12 for privacy and so that you can hear yourself speak (if you CAN speak Chinese, that is)!


One thought on “10 Surprises for an Englishman at a Restaurant in China

  1. Julie Armes says:

    Lazy Susan for shared dishes…great idea!

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