Oman dining: Make dining a pleasant experience
May 29, 2017 | 7:00 PM
by Oneza Tabish
Table manners or dining etiquettes are an important aspect of manners.

“Manners maketh a man”-an age old saying that holds true till date. Good manners reflect respect for others and make us socially acceptable. Table manners or dining etiquettes are an important aspect of manners.

They are significant because you will eat in a fashion that doesn’t offend. Good dining etiquettes come handy in professional and social situations, and it is a good idea to know some of the basics. Some of the essential dining etiquettes are:

• Keep the napkin in your lap until you have finished eating. If you must get up at any time during the meal, place the napkin on either side of your plate. When done eating, place your napkin on the table to the left of your plate.

• Never talk with your mouth full.

• Do not cut all your food in one go and cut one or two bites at a time.

• Break your bread into bite sized pieces and butter only one bite at a time.

• Never blow on your food. Please wait for it to cool.

• If you are drinking from a stemmed glass, hold it by the stem.

• Keep your elbows off the table.

• Eat slowly and do not make noise while chewing your food and avoid burping especially in public.

• Use your cutlery for eating and not gesturing.

• If you spill food at a restaurant, signal the server to help you clean up.

• Never floss or use a toothpick at the dining table.

• If you are invited to a party, where there is a sit down dinner or lunch or brunch, please wait to be seated by your host or hostess. If you are at a buffet, you may commence when there are others seated at your table.

• Kindly observe the host or hostess and pick up your fork when he or she does. Some food is to be eaten by your fingers, please wait for your host and hostess to take the lead.

• Turn off your cellphone before sitting down. It is rude to talk on your phone or text while in the company of others.

• Never reach across the table for anything, instead ask that condiments be passed from the closest to the item. Salt and pepper should be passed together.

• Always use serving cutlery to lift food from the dishes. Taste your food before you add salt, pepper or any other seasoning as this may offend your host or hostess.

• Compliment the hostess if you like the food, but do not express your opinion if you don’t.

• When you have completed your meal, leave your cutlery on your plate or in your bowl. Thank your host or hostess within a day of your dinner or lunch with a thank you note or an email.

With these tips, you will now never be asked “Where are your table manners, MR or MISS?”

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