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How to Have Top-Notch Table Manners

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Published on Jun 22, 2009

Watch more Dining & Table Manners videos: http://www.howcast.com/videos/164495-...

Impress dinner companions with your flawless manners—it’s as simple as observing a few key rules.

Step 1: Know the basics
As soon as you take your seat at the table, place your napkin in your lap and obey the basic rules: Sit up straight, keep your elbows off the table, don’t begin eating until everyone has been served, chew with your mouth closed, and silence your cell phone.

Step 2: Act “well-bread”
Your bread plate is to your left. Place a chunk of butter on your plate—enough so that you don’t have to keep dipping into the communal butter dish. Break off one bite-sized piece of bread at a time, buttering it just before eating it.

Step 3: Know what’s yours
Take the water glass to the right of your plate. (Remember, the 'DR' in 'drink' stands for 'drink right.') As courses arrive, use the utensil farthest from your plate first, and then work your way in.

Tip
If a spoon and fork are at the top of your plate, use them for dessert.

Step 4: Sip your soup
Eat soup by skimming your spoon along the surface of the broth, away from you. Then, bring it to your lips and sip it, without slurping, from the side. Should you find it excruciatingly hot, don't blow on it; simply wait for it to cool off. When you’re done, rest the spoon on your plate. If the soup bowl came with a saucer, lay your spoon on it.

Tip
Never let a used utensil—including the handle—touch the table.

Step 5: Enjoy your salad days
Cut your salad if the leaves are too big. Just don’t hack up the entire salad at once.

Step 6: Don’t hold the salt hostage
If someone asks for the salt or pepper, hand it over immediately—even if you need to season your own food. Always hand over both, even if your dining companion only requests one.

Tip
Don’t season your food without tasting it first. And don’t over-season, especially at a business meal: It looks childish.

Step 7: Spit happens
Remove something from your mouth the same way it came in. You can remove an olive pit with your fingers, but a bone or piece of gristle should be daintily spit onto your fork and then placed on the edge of your plate.

Tip
Artichokes, crisp bacon, small fowl like quail and squab, strawberries, and shrimp served with a tail may be eaten with your fingers.

Step 8: Send the right signals
When you’re finished eating, lay your utensils parallel, the tops pointing at 11 o’clock. If you’re merely pausing, cross your knife and fork on your plate like an 'X' with the knife on the right. If you excuse yourself from the table mid-meal, put your napkin on your chair. When you are ready to leave, place it on the left of your dinner plate.

Did You Know?
In Japan, slurping your soup is a sign of good manners—it shows your host that you are enjoying your food.

Comments • 189

Max Drake
problems with this video : 1. Why does this guy have such a weird (and creepy) facial expression. 2. shouldn't you have a better phone than that brick with buttons? 3. why did you spit out your food on your fork then put in on your plate, what would be better is to grab your napkin and spit the bad food into that while nobody is looking. 4. why are you dining on a floating table with smoke flying everywhere 5.why do you have the smosh logo?
Anika L Ahmed
holyyy shittt this is not a human surely
danushka perera
dat guy is realy creepy
Donnie E
oh the acting
Jeremy Kurtz
I'm whoa-fully overwhelmed with all these rules. Why would you spit your food onto the fork? That's gross! It's visible. I thought chewed food was rude. Ugh, sooo confused.
TheElectricDreamer93
Fuck manners
Bailey Dean
Thanks god my parents taught me well
porcupinemamma
cream soup away from you, clear soup towards you
Lady Buvelle
is that guy wearing lipgloss?
Kezza-C
So basically you eat ribs with a knife and fork.
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