Dining Around The World

Nov 02, 11 Dining Around The World

How well-versed are you in dining etiquette? You know to start using silverware from the outside in (thanks, Pretty Woman) and to put your napkin on your lap and not around your neck like a bib (like Tio Manuel at family barbacoa). Basically you can get by without making an ass out of yourself at a fancy restaurant or dinner party. But how would you fare halfway around the world in a foreign land? Between business and pleasure you probably do a fair amount of traveling, so who’s to say you won’t find yourself in a sticky situation or two where a good refresher course in international table manners could be a real lifesaver?

  • For instance, did you know that eating everything on your plate is actually considered rude in China? People will assume you didn’t get enough to eat and are still hungry, so make sure to leave at least few stray grains of rice behind lest you offend someone.
  • When in France, refrain from asking for ketchup no matter how lonely your food may seem without it. It’s an insult to the chef, as it is taken as a sign that you didn’t like their cooking.
  • If you want to show appreciation to your host and let them know you thoroughly enjoyed your meal, here’s how to do it in two different cultures: in Japan, slurp your noodles as loudly as possible. In the Inuit community of Canada, let one rip. A burp. Come on, now. No need to be that cochina.
  • In Austria always look into the other person’s eyes when toasting, by which you are acknowledging their existence. It’s rude to pretty much tell someone they don’t exist to you, so abre los ojos y no metas la pata!

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