Restaurant Fines Customers For Not Finishing Meals: Japanese Eatery Hachikyo Says 'Donation' Taken Out Of Respect For Fishermen

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Forget about your mother threatening to withhold dessert if you don’t finish your meal. A Japanese restaurant is allegedly doling out another punishment: fines for customers who don’t clean off their plates.

Hachikyo, a restaurant in Sapporo, Japan, is forcing customers to “give a donation” if they don’t finish their order of tsukko meshi -- a dish of rice and salmon roe, a blogger wrote on Gold Rush, as reported by Rocket News 24.

“According to the explanation in the menu, the working conditions for fishermen are harsh and so dangerous that it’s not unknown for lives to be lost,” Gold Rush blogger Midori Yokoyama wrote. “To show our gratitude and appreciation for the food they provide, it is forbidden to leave even one grain of rice in your bowl. Customers who do not finish their tsukko meshi must give a donation.”

While Hachikyo’s rules include fines, a waitress explained that the punishment is rarely exacted from customers.

“Hardly anyone leaves their tsukko meshi unfinished,” she said, according to Yokoyama.

Hachikyo’s strict policies are reminiscent of the Soup Nazi depicted in “Seinfeld.”

“First, they bring you a bowl of rice. The amount is not all that great, compared to an average salmon roe bowl, so I began to feel like eating everything wouldn’t be a problem. While you are waiting for the salmon roe to be piled on, it is another rule that you cannot touch your rice. If you push down your rice or start eating it, your tsukko meshi will be revoked!” Yokoyama wrote.

The Japanese restaurant also takes cues from family restaurants, with Hachikyo staff singing sea shanties as customers attack their bowls of tsukko meshi.

“This performance lent a real maritime authenticity to the experience, and it is something you will definitely want to see,” the blogger wrote.

The dish costs about $20, according to Yokoyama, who recommended the Japanese restaurant.

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