Dining etiquettes are the simple basic manners that are as important to know as brushing your teeth. It saves you from the embarrassment you might have to deal with otherwise in restaurants or private parties.
Knowing all the etiquettes might be hard to remember and follow, but if you want your business partner or an important associate to know that you don’t live like a cave-man and are considerate and respectful enough, you ought to follow these simple rules.
Let’s start with the napkin. You must never use your own napkin in restaurants where they provide a napkin. Before beginning the meal, unfold the napkin and place it on your lap. Do not shake it open or use it to wipe your mouth or worse, blow your nose into it! Before leaving the table, put your napkin down to the left of your place setting.
If you are not the one hosting the dinner, it is considered good manners to follow your host to the table unless they request you to choose a seat, if it isn’t already booked. Remember not to order the most expensive food in the menu just because you are not paying. Keep the price of your food moderate. Don’t ask for a second serving unless your host offers for one. If you are the host, it is considered good manners to begin eating after your guest does.
When it comes to using fork, there are two ways of using it. The American style of using it to cut the food with knife in your right hand, pick the food with fork in your left hand, place the knife on the plate, switch the fork from left to right hand and then eat it.
European or continental style is the same way too but you don’t place the knife down but eat food with your left hand using the fork. Remember never to take big bites of food or eat too fast. Take small bits of food and chew it slowly.
Don’t drink the beverage with food still in your mouth. Wait till the food has gone down your throat and then go for your beverage. If the food is too hot for your comfort, wait until it has cooled down instead of blowing it. Never talk with food in your mouth.