Cucumber Jenga


Flickr photo by sadeog

At lunch with co-workers Christophe (of FrenchPod) and Marco (of ItalianPod), we noticed something interesting on the photo-laden menu. In the photo of the obligatory raw cucumber dish, the pieces were curiously arranged. In fact, they looked just like a stack of Jenga pieces. Cucumber Jenga pieces.

We had to investigate. The waitress said that yes, it looked like that. Yes, it was 6 or 7 layers high (enough for a game of Jenga). Satisfied, we placed our Cucumber Jenga order. It arrived with the pieces on the plate in an entirely un-Jenga-like configuration.

Not to be thwarted so easily, we erected our own Jenga stack. Oh yes, it worked.

Cucumber Jenga: The Setup

We realized intuitively that Cucumber Jenga should be played with chopsticks.

Cucumber Jenga: Game On!

It didn’t last long, because our other food arrived, and we were hungry. Marco lost.

One interesting feature of the game from an architectural standpoint is the shape of the pieces. They’re rough quarter-cylinders, not rectangular solids. Obviously, this makes a difference to the structure of the tower.

Engineers and fellow vegetable gamers, if you’re interested, the restaurant is at 886 Loushanguan Road, just a bit south of Changning Road (娄山关路886号,近云雾山路) [Dianping link]. You’ll know you’re at the right place when you check the menu and spot the Cucumber Jenga. [Note: It may be possible to play this game even without going to said restaurant.]

Give it a try. More fun than Moon Cake Shuffleboard, guaranteed.

Related Jenga Dishes on Flickr:

Asparagus Jenga Potato Wedge Jenga Fish Stick Jenga French Fry Jenga


John Pasden

John is a Shanghai-based linguist and entrepreneur, founder of AllSet Learning.


  1. ..and tidier than baozi hacky sack.

  2. Looks like some people didn’t listen to their mothers’ advice about not playing with their food.


  3. oh man. baozi hacky sack ftw.

  4. “Looks like some people didn’t listen to their mothers’ advice about not playing with their food.”
    I think it`s a neat idea
    eat up the food after played with them.

  5. Yum & Fun!
    The food looks fun… Can I ask… Did you find a bar/pub that did the same thing. Maybe you should investigate with some of your students/classmates this weekend.

    Greg Pasden
    World Traveler

  6. As many cucumbers as I receive each year from 爷爷, I should try this sometime! I’m not sure that I’m coordinated enough with the chopsticks yet, though.

  7. There used to be this place in Austin called Charlie’s Attic that had a Jenga set made out of 2x4s.

    Last I heard, the place had been overrun by hipsters instead of the bikers that used to hang out, and it had closed in disgrace.

  8. Great now I’m going to be ordering cucumber and building Jenga towers for weeks.

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