Dinner Etiquette Lessons – Which Wine Glass is Yours?


As mentioned in my last post: suit jacket buttons, I recently went to a corporate dinner/dance and was in awe at the number of mistakes I encountered with respect to dressing up and dinner table etiquette. There were too many things to go into detail – but one issue that really did bother me was that my table-mates did not know which wine glass was theirs or which dinner butter knife & plate belonged to them.

Dinner table etiquette is actually pretty simple if you stick to 3 steps:

1) Your glasses are always on the right.

2) Your butter/bread plate is located on your left side.

3) For your utensils, start from the outside and work your way in.

Another thing that I noticed was that someone left their napkin on the table when they left to go to the bathroom. If you are going to leave the table, make sure to put your napkin on your chair before you leave.

Credits: Image courtesy of http://whatscookingamerica.net/Menu/DiningEtiquetteGuide.htm


  1. 1


    March 3, 2010

    8:12 pm

    This really simplifies the process of formal dining. The table setting etiquette could change depending on what is being served.

    I found this website helpful as it shows a complete setup of the table and what each item is used for: http://www.modern-manners-and-etiquette.com/table-setting-etiquette.html

  2. 2


    July 3, 2010

    6:02 pm

    As a former food and beverage manager/director in numerous high-end restaurants and hotels, I would say as a VERY general guideline this post is accurate, but as Melito stated, etiquette and table-settings will change depending on the situation, location, country, and menu. When in doubt, observe the host/ess and do what s/he does.

    Additionally, one should NEVER place a napkin on a chair or hang it over the back of a chair when leaving a table. First, it is unsightly. Second, many people get distracted when sitting down again and forget to pick up the napkin. Third, there is a risk of getting the chair dirty and then sitting in it, or disrupting the dinner by replacing the dirty chair. When leaving the table, one should place the napkin to the left of the plate. No mess. No fuss.

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