Here are some general rules on how (not) to eat your meal in Japan.
Eating with chopsticks
- Never have your chopsticks stand upright in your food (it makes reference to funeral rites)
- Do not use the chopsticks to move things around.
- Never pierce food with chopsticks.
- Don't shove food into your mouth with chopsticks, even though you might have seen people doing it.
- When moving food to other plates, or from a common dish to your own plate use a separate set of chopsticks intent for that purpose. If they are not provided you should use the blunt end of the chopstick (even though that may sound strange to you now, that's how it is done).
- Though generally eaten with chopsticks, sushi may be eaten with the fingers.
- Use thumb and middle finger (if you decide to use your fingers). Dip the fish/vegetable side in the soy sauce, not the rice side, otherwise the rice will be soggy and your sushi will disintegrate (not a nice look).