Omakase vs. Osusume vs. Suisen: Meaning in Japanese

Omakase (おまかせ/お任せ), Osusume (おすすめ/お薦め), and Suisen (すいせん/推薦) are all Japanese words relating to a recommendation.

While Osusume and Suisen are synonyms, Omakase is somewhat different in meaning. But how?

Omakase vs. Osusume vs. Suisen

Osusume and Suisen are words for recommendation in English, while Omakase means to leave something up to someone.

Suisen (すいせん/推薦)

Suisen

Suisen is a formal way to say Osusume, and its verb form is 推薦する (Suisen-Suru), meaning make a recommendation.

We rarely use Suisen towards friends and family members, but the term frequently appears in formal situations, like

  • 推薦状 (recommendation letter)
  • 推薦入試 (entrance examination by recommendation)

Osusume (おすすめ/お薦め)

Osusume

Osusume is a colloquial expression of Suisen or Suisho (推奨), and its verb form is 薦める (Susumeru), meaning recommend.

Stores and restaurants in Japan often use this word in advertisements, displays, and menus, like 

  • 当店のおすすめ (our store’s recommendation)
  • 今日のおすすめ (today’s recommendation)
  • おすすめメニュー (recommended menu)

Omakase (おまかせ/お任せ)

Omakase Sushi

Omakase is the noun form of Omakase-Shimasu (おまかせします: meaning: I’ll leave it up to you). 

When you have a seat at the counter in a Sushi restaurant, you can use this phrase (in many cases) to leave the serving up to the chef, without ordering details, like

  • 予算五千円以内で。あとはおまかせします (The budget is 5,000 yen or less. I’ll leave the rest up to you)

Further, some Japanese restaurants (like Sushi and Teppanyaki) have Omakase Course (おまかせコース: leave the ordering up to the chef course) (with fixed prices) on the menu in advance. 

Tomo

Hi, I'm Tomo, a Japanese blogger living in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. For the purpose of enriching your life, I would like to introduce things about Japan on this blog, especially unique Japanese products, cooking recipes, cultures, and facts and trivia.

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