The Unspoken Rules Of Fine Dining part 1 - FoodCriticLive
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The Unspoken Rules Of Fine Dining part 1

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In the world of Fine Dining, there are unspoken rules and expectations of how you should behave and interact. It’s one thing to afford or be invited for a three course or seven-course meal, but another thing to be out of place. Whether it’s a formal dinner or you’re on a date, there are some things you absolutely must not do. Here are a few guidelines to save you from humiliation.


1. Arrive on time
The majority of fine dining restaurants in Lagos require reservations to be made beforehand. Being fashionably late is not cute. Most especially if it’s a formal dinner such as a business meeting or Office end of year dinner. If you’re going on a date, it’s also not nice to keep the person waiting for so long. Anything more than 8-15 minutes late is unacceptable, and considered rude. You could also risk losing your reservation in some cases.


2. Dress the part
When choosing your outfit, think about making it on the best-dressed list. It’s important to find out the dress code beforehand. The idea is to look elegant without being overdressed or loud. Soft colors such as sky blue, blush, grey, pale yellow, light green, cream, or lilac will put you in a great mood. You can also do classic colours; black, red or white. A three-piece suit without the tie or a shirt tucked into trousers with a pair of shoes is a good option for men. For ladies, an elegant long/short dress or a lovely blazer/top on a pair of trousers/short skirt will do. Bear in mind that there’s a thin line between being sexy and slutty. Therefore, aim to be just a little sexy knowing that excessive cleavage is a no-no. If you choose to wear traditional attire, perhaps it’s not a good idea to wear Agbada that will get in the way or really tight Gele with a wrapper that will leave you uncomfortable throughout the night.


3. Don’t take a plus 1
This goes without saying but with the way things have turned out these days, it needs to be said. Except you have been asked to, do not bring your friend or guest along for the evening. It’s intrusive, rude, and awkward. Seating arrangements are perfectly planned out and you don’t want to embarrass the person you brought. It will be obvious they were not invited.


4. Put your phone away
Dinner or lunch is a social event and not the time to be scrolling endlessly through your phone. Put it away in your pocket or bag and keep the bag off the table. Spending time on your phone suggests, you don’t want to be there in the first place and can be considered as rude. Occasionally, you can take a few pictures of the setup, menu, and food but try not to record other people or take too many selfies. Be discreet to avoid any embarrassment. At classy restaurants, taking excessive pictures is simply viewed as cheap. Also, put your phone on silent and if the call is not important, don’t take it. You will interrupt the flow, and everyone will subconsciously eavesdrop on your gist. You really don’t need that.


5. Use the right cutlery and glass
The setup of cutlery and plates can be a little overwhelming. Don’t panic though, the secret is to work from the outside in. Start with cutlery from the outside on the left and on the right and begin to work your way in as you proceed through the meal. This means that the cutlery furthest away from the plate is intended for the first course. Forks are on the left side and on the right side will be knives and spoons. Above the plate of the main dish will be a fork and spoon meant for dessert. Bread and butter plates sit above the forks whilst the trio of glasses sit above the knives and spoons on your right. The first glass closest to the plate is the water glass, beside it is a white wine glass, and at the top center is a red wine glass. If you are given a pair of chopsticks, and you don’t know how to use them, now is not the time to experiment. Simply use the fork and knife intended for the main course.


It’s important to bear these guidelines in mind, you really don’t want to become the gist or the joke of the event. In an intimate setting, you’ll stick out like a sore thumb. There are a few more guidelines to note. Part two gets more interesting with more gist and striking truths. See you on the flip side.



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