Basic cutlery table manners are generally known: the fork goes in the left hand, tines facing down, and the knife in the right hand. But there are many more cutlery etiquette rules that people are unaware of. To know which piece of cutlery to use next, the rule ‘from the outside in’ applies.
When you are finished eating, soup spoons, coffee spoons and dessert spoons should be placed on the service plate or saucer. Never leave them in the bowl or cup.
When having soup, tilt the bowl away from you to scoop the last of the soup into your spoon. Start at the centre of the bowl and move the spoon away from you. Bring the soup to your mouth and drink from the edge of the spoon.
For the table setting, the napkin should be placed folded in the centre of the main plate. When using the napkin, place it on your lap. If it is a small napkin, open it out over your lap. If it is a big napkin, keep the napkin folded once. If you leave the table during the meal, place your napkin, loosely folded, on the seat of your chair. A napkin is never returned to the table until you are ready to leave. It stays on your lap, even after the meal is finished.
When having pudding, use your pudding spoon with the bowl of the spoon facing inwards and treat it like a knife. Use the pudding fork to push small portions of the pudding onto the spoon.
How you leave your knife and fork on the plate indicates how you enjoyed your meal. The fork should be placed in the plate with the tines facing down.
See example below:
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