Use the rikaichan popup dictionary or your favorite reference tool with my transcription below the photo if you need help reading this Osaka kushikatsu shop’s sign.
串カツ is deep fried, skewered meat and vegetables, and along with the quality of the kushikatsu, the dipping sauce(ソース or たれ) can have a big impact on a shop’s popularity.
Though there are some upscale 串カツ places, this is by and large a cheap, casual dining experience, with customers often elbow to elbow at a counter, sometimes standing. Some shops favor a communal sauce that everyone can dip into rather than serving individual portions, and for the sake of hygiene, it’s common to see written reminders on the counter or wall about not double dipping the same skewer once you’ve bitten into it.
This shop takes that multiple steps farther with an impossible to miss, cheeky admonition on its sign which dwarfs だるま, the joint’s name, making it look almost like an afterthought. It seems to imply that the sauce is so good that you’ll be tempted to leave your manners at the door! Sounds like a place I should check out next time I get to Osaka.
When our friend Haruka showed me this photo, I got a kick out of it and remembered a sitcom episode about the American version of this food faux pas, double dipping with chips at a party. A minute later I found the related Seinfeld clip here and we all had a good laugh. 二度漬けをしないでね！No double dipping!
The character 串 in 串カツ happens to be one of my favorite kanji because it’s one of those rarities, up there with 山 and 川, that faithfully depicts what it represents. In this case, a skewer. If only they were all so user friendly! Do any other such kanji come to mind? Please post a comment and share them! I’m sure we all have some common favorites, the low hanging fruit on the kanji tree.
The kanji component of 漬け also appears in the often seen compound 漬物(つけもの), pickled vegetables, taking on a different, but related meaning.
Thanks a bunch for the photo, Haruka, hope you can come to Kyoto again soon!
The numbers below refer to the kanji I’ve transcribed below the photo, and correspond to their order of appearance in both Heisig’s Remembering the Kanji and Kanji in Context.
To learn more about how this information can help you learn kanji, please read this.
Heisig(H2, H1194, H1545, H402, H1996 H50)
Kanji In Context(KIC2, KIC333, KIC1506, KIC110, KIC1377, KIC32)
Originally posted 2013-05-01 00:45:42.