Fine Dining 101: Basic Restaurant Etiquette

When you hear “fine dining”, what immediately comes to mind is the expensive food, the tiny servings and that it’s only for a certain class in society. In truth, and when you actually try to dine in such restaurants, you’ll learn that fine dining is for everyone, and that it’s not just about the food. It’s for everyone who’d want to take a break, be serviced with courtesy and be served with filling, hot plates of hearty-cooked dishes.

To fully enjoy and indulge in the experience though, there are certain do’s and don’ts to be familiar with. Here’s basic restaurant etiquette to keep in mind.


Dress Appropriately

Rugged jeans and flip flops (or any open toe foot wear) have no place in white tablecloth restaurants. The proper attire for men is a jacket, if not a suit. for women, it’s dresses or slacks and a suit.


Put Away Your Gadgets

We’ve gotten so used to placing our phones or tablets on the table, where we can conveniently check when a message pops in. Fine dining encourages you to immerse yourself in the experience. So, switch your phone to silent mode, keep it away in a bag or your pocket until after the dining is over.


Be a Gracious Host

If you are the host or the person who organized the little get-together, make your companions feel at ease. Allow them to order first, and have your payment ready.


It also goes without saying that you should call the restaurant to book for a table for you and your guest before coming in to dine.


Do Not Yell at the Waiter

Instead, try to make eye contact with your waiter. If he fails to notice, raise your right hand with your index finger out.


Know Where to Put Your Napkin

Wait for the host to secure the napkin on his or her lap before you begin eating. If leaving the table to use the restroom, put your napkin on your chair seat. When finished eating, the napkin goes to the left of your plate.


Do Not Return the Wine

Keep in mind that most restaurants sell wine by the bottle. You will have to keep it, if you and your companions weren’t able to finish the bottle.


Fine dining is an experience; a pleasant one that everyone deserves to be treated to, once in a while.