Table Manners, chewing etiquette


After watching 20+ C & K dramas, I have a question. So many times I’m seeing characters in the dramas who talk with their mouths full, pile in more food in when they are still working on their last bite, chew with their mouths open, and take huge bites of food that they could have split up into smaller portions. Sometimes I get that it is a gag but often it seems to be standard practice. My mom would constantly tell us, “Close your mouth when you chew.”, “Take smaller bites.”, “Don’t talk with your mouth full.”, “Chew your food well and don’t eat so fast.” on and on until it was drilled into us. What do good table manners in China and Korea look like? Honestly, no judgment here, I’m just really curious.

Another major difference is putting food on other’s plates or in other’s bowls without asking. I’ve noticed that seems to be an olive branch, a show of affection, a kind of support, but it was news to me. I had to look it up. In the US, we ask for more or we offer more but people use serving spoons, not their own utensils.


Maybe there is something in this topic for you


@nongmolaurie_51 Interesting question and certainly one that is cultural :):smiley: East Asian culture is quite opposite to Western culture. Like you, my parents would constantly tell me “don’t talk with your mouth full” etc. For the East Asian culture, to show appreciation to the person who prepared and cook the food, one is expected to eat more and stuff food into one’s mouth. Another thing is that no food is ever left on the table. Everyone is expected to finish up all the dishes. This shows that the food is so delicious that none is left.

As for sharing food, it is again cultural and normal to offer one’s food to others even if the other person hasn’t asked for it. You are right that it is a show of love and affection. Food is a very important part in the East Asian culture as parents always make sure that no matter what, there is always food on the table for their children. It is their way of saying “I love you” as verbal expression is not common in this culture. Love is usually shown through actions.

Another thing I noticed as well is that in the Western culture, one waits until the other person’s glass or cup is empty before offering more drinks. However, in the East Asian culture, it is the complete opposite. The host always makes sure that his guests glass/cup is never empty and at the meal table, it is the host’s job to make sure that his guest’s glass/cup is filled up before it is empty.


This is gold. Thank you for the in depth response. This has been a burning question for me for months.


Thanks but no. It isn’t a phobia for me as it doesn’t make me love any of the shows less, but I really wanted Weiwei to cut that lettuce leaf before stuffing it in her mouth. I mean it was Nai for crying out loud!


Yes, and being the adult, if I want to top up my cup of tea at restaurants. I have to serve elders and parents first, adults older than me, then younger adults or children before myself, by then the pot is usually empty. :roll_eyes:


Have you seen Love O2O? Spoiler alert. She was stuffing it into her own mouth. I just wasn’t certain if it was really bad manners or if it was perfectly okay and she just was displaying a healthy appetite. If you haven’t seen it and you need a happy drama to take a rest from all the negative stuff, I highly recommend it.


those noodles mstuffing in mouth, I have always wondered how they didn’t get choked along with all of these other ones!


I’m one of the few tea drinkers I know and I usually only drink herbal tea. I make my husband’s coffee every morning before he leaves, but if I drink that stuff I can’t sleep. I live in the land that spawned Starbucks. There are little coffee shacks all over the place.


I saw it a while back but can’t remember that scene bc I always skip over them bc I can no longer stand those scenes, and when I see them it makes me physically sick. I want to throw up or get nauseous all day long when I can’t stop replaying it in my mind.

My daughter saw one scene I point it out to her, and she was upset with me and told me not to ever show her anything like that lol She always wonder why I like Asian dramas but I told her not every drama has gross scenes like that. Plus, I skip them now so it doesn’t ‘‘face’’ me any more.


I’m sorry but I was cracking up. Been there , too. It’s so unfair but some customs in different countries leave some us even hungry.

In my country, the cook serve everyone first, and the server is always last. I was the ‘‘cook’’ in my house although I was younger, and poor me sometimes I served so much food I left almost ‘‘nothing to eat for myself.’’ It didn’t bothered me since I was in my teens and it helped me keep in shape (I was 95 to 105 pounds but looked skeletal and malnourished). I thought I looked so in shape and one day when I saw my old pics at my mother’s house , I was shocked bc I thought I was in shape, not sickly looking like that.


I have teenagers who would be happy to eat the way they do in these dramas. I can’t get that upset about it. I do still see Weiwei shoveling in that lettuce leaf though. I love that Nai still liked her after that. He is a keeper. I thought she was just really, really ill at ease and her brain wasn’t functioning enough to cut up the lettuce before she tried to eat it.


Here everyone cooks. I am no longer a slave to the kitchen. I thank my lucky stars on that one.



You are so blessed! I am fed up of cooking so I’m on strike. Since I was a teenager I cook for everyone, and I still have two of my already adult kids at home which not even when I’m sick make an effort to cook for themselves. Sick and all, I cooked all the time bc they won’t eat the whole day; if I didn’t cooked their meal. One day I exploded and put my foot down.

Now, I buy stuff that are microwavable and told them ‘‘EAT THAT OR STARVE’’ I am Happy and Free…finally.


I feel your pain. There is something to be said for making them be sous chefs early on and then they start wanting to try their hand at doing more and more on their own. My daughter now makes baked tofu and I have never made that, but my kids love to spice things up with the hot stuff and I can’t eat that, but I generally go my own way with meals anyway because I try to avoid flour and sugar. At least I don’t have to cook or bake things that I can’t eat.


That would have made a great scene for a drama! :rofl:


We need more moms rebelling. We are not your slaves, we are not your maids, you are now old enough to do this for yourself. If you need me to teach you again how to do it, I’m right here to offer verbal assistance while I watch you go through all the steps. Now is the perfect time with most people home together. If they don’t know how to do things, when we go they will be really at a loss.


And if the dads pay attention as well, we’ll have another hand in the kitchen next time. :slight_smile:


Oh, come on, who can’t cook ramen? The basic cooking skills of Asian uni students all over the world!


My husband and kids made homemade pizza last night. I was really fortunate in finding him, but it took me a long time and I traveled from Southern CA to the Seattle area to do it. I didn’t find him until I was 36. Next life I hope we find each other much younger.