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I posted a sentence to be corrected which was:

私は辛い野菜が不味い。

and they told me to use 「嫌い」 instead of 「不味い」.

What is the difference between the two when it comes to food?

  • 3
    Use of kanji for まずい is not very common. Suggest sticking with the standard hiragana for most applications. – BJCUAI Feb 20 at 20:57
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私は辛い野菜が嫌い makes sense because this is the grammar pattern used to talk about things you like or do not like.

  • 私は...が嫌い
  • 私は...が好き

I think it's important to note that both 嫌い and 好き are nouns.

Really, they are nominalized verbs,

  • 嫌う(to dislike) → 嫌い(something disliked)
  • 好く(to like) → 好き(something liked)

You might think of the Japanese grammar as saying something like,

  • "I have a dislike for spicy vegetables."

私は辛い野菜が不味い is incorrect because this is not the grammar pattern used to talk about whether you think something is tasty or not. 不味い is an i-adjective, meaning "bad tasting".

The correct grammar pattern for telling someone what you think is tasty or not (assuming you want to use 私は) would be,

  • 私は辛い野菜が不味いと思う.

If you don't say the と思う part, then it is similar to saying "I have spicy vegetables taste bad" in English.

There are two ways to fix this, either remove "I" and change the topic to "spicy vegetables" or add "think"...

  • 辛い野菜は不味い → "Spicy vegetables taste bad"
  • 私は辛い野菜が不味いと思う → "I think spicy vegetables taste bad"
  • 1
    How about if you change 私は to 私には? Would the OP's sentence work then? – user3856370 Feb 20 at 23:39
  • I feel like 私には辛い野菜が不味い is probably grammatically OK, but wouldn't be the most common way to say it. – sazarando Feb 20 at 23:54

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