The Top Ten Rules of Fine Dining
If you did not grow up attending many formal dinner parties, as an adult these events probably make you nervous. Don’t worry, we’ve all been there but these Top Ten Rules of Dining will help anyone to gain some insight on fine dining etiquette.
Where do you sit?
Fine dining parties tend to have seat plans on board in front of the dining room, or place cards on the table. If neither of these exist just wait to be seated. Remember to sit up straight and don’t lean over your plate!
When do you eat?
It’s best to wait until everyone has been served and the host or hostess begins to eat, or when you are told it is okay to eat. Never salt your food even before trying the meal as it’s an insult to the cook. If you need salt the most polite approach is to put some on the side of your plate for dipping.
How to use a Napkin
A napkin should only be used to dab the mouth, not wipe it and it should be folded and placed on your knees. Never tuck it into the front of your shirt!
How to Eat Soup
Your soup spoon will either be round or shaped like an egg. The classic way to eat soup is by scooping a bit starting at the centre front of the bowl and push away. Drink the soup from the edge of the spoon and never put the whole spoon in your mouth.
What Glass do I use?
When fine dining there may be a number of different glassware but actually, it is not that difficult if you pay attention to the server. The server will pour a bit of water into water glasses, a bit of wine into the wine glasses and so on. When toasting, never clink the glasses together, simply raise them.
How to Order Wine
It is considered impolite to discuss the price of wine so just select one you like in your price point. If you mention a wine in your budget and ask the server for recommendations, he or she will understand. No need to smell the wine, just gently sniff when you take your first sip. Don’t send it back unless it has gone bad and tastes like vinegar.
How to Use the Cutlery
There is a lot of cutlery but it’s not very difficult. The general rule is to start outside and work your way in. The entree fork is on the right though! Always hold your knife and fork and cut food as you eat. Don’t cut your dish up in to little pieces and eat like a child. If you set your cutlery down, place face side down on the plate and when you are finished, cross the knife and fork on the plate. Never leave your soup spoon in the bowl.
How to Behave at the Table
When you are eating at the table put away your cell phone and any other devices, sit up straight and don’t put your elbows on the table. It is also considered good manners to make eye contact with the rest of the guests and have a conversation, taking your time to eat, and fully enjoying the experience.
How to Eat Bread
If you do not have a bread plate it is acceptable to place your bread to the left of your plate but it is not acceptable to put the bread directly on the plate. Don’t cut the bread, just tear it. If you want butter place some from the butter dish on the side of your plate. Don’t put the butter from the dish directly on to your bread.
How to Dress for Formal Dining
Generally speaking just dress very nice. Jackets and ties for men and dresses for women are usually acceptable. These rules vary from occasions and hosts but the main rule of thumb is that if it is fine dining, dress fine.
For any fine dining occasion contact en Ville at, 416-533-8800.