At Tàn Chá’ we have created a space that is designed to transport you to, and reflect the culture and traditions of China. We provide a stage for a memorable experience where you can enjoy the best Asian cuisine in Dubai.
Spread across two floors and five unique rooms, each with a different Chinese name, every detail of our restaurant has been carefully considered. From the wonders found on our menu, ranging from Dim Sum to Duck, our special cocktail selection and range of teas. Every detail is important and comes together to form a cohesive masterpiece that is worthy of one of the best Michelin star restaurants in Dubai.
This attention to detail even extends to the humble chopstick! In fact, it’s amazing that such a simple and ubiquitous item has such a long and fascinating history and culture.
Chopsticks are known as kuàizi in Mandarin, which translates as ‘ Quick Little Fellows’. They are the traditional utensil in China that have been in use for over 2,000 years. They are believed to have originated during the Zhou Dynasty and have since become an important part of Chinese cuisine and culture.
The exact origin of chopsticks is somewhat shrouded in mystery, but there are a few theories. One story claims that chopsticks were invented as a result of a famine, when food had to be cut into small pieces to save on cooking fuel. Another theory is that chopsticks were introduced to China by the Mongols during the Yuan Dynasty, as a way to avoid eating food that was considered impure because it was touched by knives.
The disdain for knives is also an element of another possible aspect of the popularisation of the use of chopsticks. The Chinese philosopher Confucius believed in avoiding violence and promoting peace, and so advocated against the use of knives at the table. He believed that the use of chopsticks, which are not sharp or dangerous, promoted a peaceful atmosphere during meals.
There is still etiquette around the correct use of chopsticks. They should be held between the thumb and the index and middle fingers, with the other fingers supporting the chopsticks from below. It is considered impolite to spear food with chopsticks or to make loud noises while eating. In some regions, it is also considered bad manners to cross chopsticks or to stick them upright in a bowl of rice, as this is thought to resemble the incense sticks used in funeral rituals.
Have you ever noticed that chopsticks are a standard length? Again this is an expression of Chinese culture and tradition. It is said that the standard length of 22 cm represents the 7 sentiments and 6 desires, and is thought to bring good luck and prosperity. At Tàn Chá’ we have put our own spin on these traditions by offering our guests personalised chopsticks, bearing their name. It is this level of attention to detail that makes us one of the best Michelin star restaurants in Dubai.
Now that you know more about the (not so) humble chopstick, why not visit us at Tàn Chá’ and practice your technique?