I’m sure that many of you like to eat. I love to eat! That’s
probably why I’m overweight!
But what is a “Viking”?
I hope everyone is aware that this is incorrectly used in Japan.
In Japan, it means a restaurant where you can eat all you want.
Actually, it means “Ancient Norwegian Pirate”! In the 9th to
the 11th century, many warriors from the Scandinavian area sailed
their boats to other lands and attacked many cities. These warriors
were called Vikings and were famous for their savagery and brutality.
They braided their beards and wore helmets with deer horns attached
to them to make them look scarier. When they returned to their
own lands, they had a celebration dinner, called a “smorgasbord”.
At this celebration dinner, they would have their women (usually
kidnapped hostages) make local dishes from the cities that they
just destroyed. They felt pride in the fact that they would
most likely be the last men to eat these particular recipes,
as the cities where these recipes were created had been destroyed
at the hands of the Vikings.
In the early Showa Era, the builders of new luxury hotels wanted
an English name for a buffet-style restaurant. As the word “smorgasbord”
was too difficult to pronounce, the word, “Viking” was substituted.
In America, there are many 食べ放題 restaurants. These are called
“Smorgasbords”. Sometimes they are known simply as “All-You-Can-Eat”
Please don’t use the term, “Viking restaurant”, or else your
foreign friends might think you are referring to a restaurant
that serves Norwegian food!!