“Irasshai!” Customers are greeted by the Japanese word for “welcome” as they enter a traditional sushi restaurant. They are led to the counter seat, and decide to do “omakase,” leaving the responsibility of choosing the selection of fish to the chef. The chef knows best; which order to eat, what fish is in season, and which fish is especially good on that particular day.
So you've decided to take part in a formal Japanese dinner, maybe at a tea house.Today's topic is probably the most important for our readers making plans to go to Japan: How to prepare for and participate in a geisha dinner. What should you wear? What will happen during the dinner? What interactions can you expect?
Believe it or not, the original geisha hardly resembled modern geisha in any way. The first geisha were actually male, appearing around the year 1730. It was only about 20 years later that female geisha began to appear in the forms of odoriko (踊り子, meaning dancers) and shamisen players, and they quickly took over the profession, dominating it by 1780.