9 Dining Rules
You didn't know you were breaking
Reading this on your phone as you're about to tuck into a delicious meal? Uh oh!
That's rule number 5 broken right there!
When we think of etiquette rules, we all know we're not supposed to put our elbows on the dining table, and our knives and forks are supposed to go together when we've finished eating... but there's a whole host of other dining rules you're probably breaking without realising.
You'll be surprised to see just how many foodie faux pas many of us make at the dining table.
How many are you breaking?
1. Salt and pepper stay together
Lots of people follow traditions when it comes to passing the salt around the table, but did you know that it's 'proper' etiquette to pass the salt and pepper together? There's nothing wrong with adding a bit of seasoning to your meal, but we'd take that with a pinch of salt!
2. Always break bread with your hands
There's nothing better than tucking into a freshly baked roll at dinner, but it may surprise you to know that a bread roll is meant to be torn with your hands, and not sliced with a knife. If you prefer to use cutlery to carve your roll, we won't judge you – the more bread and butter the merrier!
3. Adhere to the time on the invite
The invite says 8pm? Keep to the time!
You may think turning up early will show your hosts how enthusiastic you are about the evening, but in reality you may be left in the living room whilst the host finishes frantically laying the table, getting ready and finishing off the cooking!
Try to arrive within half an hour of the time stated. You wouldn't be late for a restaurant reservation – so don't be late for your friends.
4. Napkin code
Napkins are great for preventing mishaps at the table, but who knew there were so many rules on how to use them?
For example, if you have to leave the table temporarily, did you know you're supposed to place your napkin on the chair and not the table?
5. Keep personal items away from the food
Whether it's a phone, wallet or keys, most of us wouldn't think twice about leaving personal items on the table when out for a meal. According to etiquette guidelines this is a foodie crime, but we won't take offence!
6. The 'rule of six'
We've all been out for dinner in a large group and had to wait for our fellow diners' meals to arrive before tucking into ours. Did you know that according to the 'rule of six', if you're in a large party (12 or more) you can begin eating once the first six people have been served?
7. Just 'soup-er'
Everyone knows it's rude to slurp soup – apparently it should be spooned away from you to minimise the risk of spillages, and bread dunking is a definite no-go. If you can't resist diving into our 'Roasted Butternut Squash Soup' with a crusty baguette and a generous helping of butter, we won't blame you!
8. Wining and dining
According to wine connoisseurs, you should hold your glass by the stem or base, to prevent smudging of the bulb and make it easier to swirl the wine and infuse flavour. If you hold your glass by the stem, you also stop yourself from warming up a chilled wine.
Whether you're craving a crisp sauvignon blanc or a full-bodied shiraz, we've got plenty of great wines for guests to enjoy, so why not pop in to your local Loch Fyne to refine your wine etiquette with friends?
9. Raise a glass
It's a cliché, but if you're making a toast at a dinner party it's quite common to tap the edge of the glass with a knife to get the attention of your guests. Etiquette experts would argue that the best way to make a toast is to stand and raise your glass to the centre of the room, and not by clinking your glass. Cheers!