Napkin etiquette refers to the proper way to handle and use napkins during a meal. It is an essential aspect of table manners and reflects your respect and consideration for others. Here are some key points to keep in mind when it comes to napkin etiquette:
1. Placement: When you sit down at a table, wait for your host or the most senior person to take their napkin first. Once they do, unfold your napkin and place it on your lap. If you need to leave the table temporarily during the meal, loosely fold your napkin and place it to the left or right of your plate.
2. Unfolding: When unfolding your napkin, do so discreetly and without making a lot of noise. Unfold it fully and place it smoothly on your lap, with the fold facing towards your waist.
3. Usage: Use your napkin throughout the meal to gently dab your mouth, especially after taking a bite or a sip. Avoid wiping your mouth vigorously or using the napkin as a handkerchief. Blot your mouth gracefully and avoid leaving any food stains on the napkin.
4. Placement during a meal: When you need to briefly leave the table during a meal, place your napkin neatly on your chair. This signals to the waitstaff that you will return, and it keeps your napkin from soiling the tablecloth or other diners.
5. Placement at the end of the meal: At the end of the meal, place your napkin loosely folded to the left or right of your plate. Avoid refolding it or wadding it up. Do not place your used napkin back on the table or on your plate.
6. Final departure: If you are the last person to finish eating, wait until everyone else has finished before placing your napkin on the table. This signals to the waitstaff that the meal is over.
Remember, napkin etiquette is about being discreet, considerate, and respectful of others at the table. By following these guidelines, you can enhance your dining experience and leave a positive impression on those around you.
Happy Dining, from Peerless Etiquette.