Despite the small size of the Japanese pepper, it packs a powerful, spicy punch. The phrase suggests that size isn’t the only determinant of strength or ability.
A: Yoru naa. Kachoo mata shooshin da te. Iyoiyo buchoo rashii.
B: “Sanshoo wa kotsubu de mo karai” tte ne.
A: Great! Our section chief has been promoted again. Looks like he’s going to be a manager now.
B: Well, they say, “Japanese peppers are hot, though small.”