Chopstick rests are a small and often overlooked element of a Japanese table setting. However, far from being just a decorative accent, chopstick rests serve an important function and should be definitely be used by anyone who uses chopsticks on a regular basis. Read on to see why we think chopstick rests are so important as well as to see our recommendations for some of the best chopstick rests on BECOS!
What is a chopstick rest?
A chopstick rest is a small plate or bar, usually made of porcelain or metal, that you place underneath your chopsticks when you set them down. It serves as a resting place for your chopsticks while they are not in use, preventing them from being knocked over or dropped on the table.
While many people think that the chopstick rest is only for ornamental purposes and to add some aesthetic appeal to their table setting, there are other reasons why it's important to have one.
Function of a chopstick rest
Chopstick rests are used to hold your chopsticks in place when you are not using them. Chopstick rests have a number of other uses as well:
They keep the ends of your chopsticks from touching the table or other food on your plate, which can be considered disrespectful and unsanitary.
They prevent the chopsticks from rolling off the table when you're eating.
They can force you to slow down and properly chew your food if you get into the habit of setting your chopsticks down between bites.
Where to put a chopstick rest on the table
When eating Japanese food, the chopstick rests should be placed in front of the dishes, closest to the edge of the table. The tips of your chopsticks should point towards your left-hand side.
For Western-style food, place the chopstick rest on the side of your plate or bowl, just as you would with other cutlery.
Types of chopstick rests
Chopstick rests are important because they prevent chopsticks from being misplaced and make your table look neater. Chopstick rests are also practical, as they provide a place to store the chopsticks while you eat or drink other food items. These have been in use for centuries in Japan, where most people eat with chopsticks instead of forks and knives.
They're an essential part of any dining experience—and come in all shapes and sizes! You can find traditional designs that match your home decor, or fun ones that reflect seasonal themes like nature or animals. Some even double as small dishes for side items when not being used as chopstick holders!
Our favorite chopstick rests on BECOS
Cutest: Otani Ware Bear Chopstick Rests by Otaniyaki Tamura
Otaniyaki Tamura was founded in 1784, but these adorable bear-shaped chopstick rests have a very youthful design that goes perfectly with a casual table setting.
Best simple design: Imari-Arita Ware Gosu Chopstick Rest Set by
This simple set of chopstick rests comes with a gradient of 5 hues of blue, making for a unique set that will add a charm to your dinner table.
Best metal rests: Osaka Naniwa Pewter Ware Choptick Rest Set "Drop" by Osaka Suzuki
This gorgeous set of 5 chopstick rests are formed from solid pewter that is dropped into shapes that form a matching set while each being unique.
Most useful rests: Glass "Ukiyo Hirari" Chopstick Rests by Tomi Glass
This set of 5 flower petal-shaped chopstick rests are not only cute, but also can double as a small serving dish for side items such as pickles or seasoning.
Best chopstick/rest set: Wakasa Lacquerware "Starry Night" Chopsticks Pair Set by Crystal
The chopsticks are hand-painted with a beautiful design that is reminiscent of the night sky and paired with simple matching chopstick rests.
Don't just place your chopsticks down on the table, use a rest.
In Japan, chopstick rests are an essential part of a traditional table setting. They complete the meal and serve to keep your chopsticks from rolling around or getting the table dirty. If you're planning on having chopsticks at your next party or dinner, consider purchasing some chopstick rests as well.