Table Arrangements & Dining Etiquette

Andrei Emanuel Pop
A free video tutorial from Andrei Emanuel Pop
Entrepreneur, Etiquette Trainer, People Connector
4.4 instructor rating • 4 courses • 4,755 students

Lecture description

In this lesson, you will learn about:

  • The Basic Table Setting
  • The Informal Setting 
  • The Formal Setting 
  • The logic behind the formal arrangement 
  • The `BMW` rule 
  • The Glass ware 
  • How to find your seat 
  • When to sit down at a dining in
  • Who do you help sit down and why?

Learn more from the full course

Etiquette Training: a Practical Guide to Networking Mastery

How to be a pleasant individual in any given situation, network better, build relationships fast and be more successful.

02:47:28 of on-demand video • Updated August 2017

  • Make a good first impression everywhere and anywhere
  • Network smoothly in both social and business environments, in both 1 on 1 and group settings
  • Be a great conversationalist by understanding the 3 elements of a great conversation
  • Be gracious guests and hosts at events as well as properly respond to insults
  • Properly prepare, interpret and respond to invitations for various types of events
  • Understand how and when to correctly use each of the 7 Dress Codes
  • Navigate Receptions and Swedish Buffets so as to network smoothly
  • How to communicate with the waitstaff non-verbally at important social and business events
English [Auto] Hello I'm on the and you are partaking in the basic etiquette training course in this section. We will discuss about the banquet table arrangements. So in the previous section we discussed about the reception the Swedish buffet. How did that work at that event. Well see are sections generally precedes a dining in a form or another or might be at a banquet it might be at some sort of or heard or maybe even a wedding. Sometimes weddings are preceded by reception where you go you meet everybody and then you go with the dining part where you actually sit down and enjoy the meal. And so while we did discuss the reception for which is really important because many of these don't doning a dining here or any kind of formal table arrangement there are some events that actually do that. So for instance graduation banquets or as they said the weddings or even some formal company events some formal social events. They include a dining room or a fashion so to do that I would like to also talk about various other table arrangements even though we will tackle mostly the formal table arrangements. I will also like to talk about some other levels of formality in terms of how would you a table set up. So the first one that I would like to talk to you about is actually the informal setting. Excuse me though on the breakfast setting. The basic one the basic setting is what they call them also the breakfast setting. That's the most simple arrangement as you can see on the slide. They have very few dishes maybe a coffee cup maybe the plate but mostly it's really the minimum requirement that you need for a comfortable breakfast. As you can also see on the slide generally speaking you will not necessarily see all of these dishes and utensils at a breakfast table. This is been the arrangement for a very rich breakfast. Now moving on to the informal setting that's the arrangement that you will see generally at restaurants as you notice in this one you don't necessarily have the plate already on the table. You have the paper towel or the napkin but you don't and some utensils also which you don't necessarily have the plate and that is because this particular table arrangement is what you will find in restaurants. So if you go to a restaurant and you order your food then you look get the place that you need but the food on them. There is no point in having a plate on the table if the waiters do not know what you need. Which is why you will mostly find the napkin the tenso that you may need for that evening and some beverages but you will mostly most often not find a plate. No one will move on to the formal table arrangement. So the formal table arrangement is literally the highest and apparently the most complicated. But as we talk through it you will find it is actually pretty logical it actually makes sense to the way it is designed. So one of the things that I would like to show you is you can also see on the slide is that all of the dishes and utensils are pretty much positioned in a very logical manner. For instance in order for you to determine bliss the white bread which is yours and what coffee cup is yours and what beverages are yours as well as what particular play is yours when you go to each table. You will most likely find yourself in this particular setting. And so looking from up in as you can see also on that slide that you be glad to do this app for BMW or TNT. So the stands for bread and stands for Neo and W stands for water. So if you keep this acronym in mind youll be able to figure out exactly what dishes and utensils are worth on a formal arrangement. Now before we move on to this section I would like to take a quick break and look at the slides. OK so I hope that you had some time to actually look at those so the slides especially the formal arrangement because now I'm going to talk to you in detail about each article that you find on a formal arrangement. So let's start from outside. One of the things that I want to highlight is you go through it. Is that all of this arrangement is set up so you would use the utensil in the order that the meals will come. So for instance in my particular setting I have my silver spoon on the outside and I have myself for the outside. For instance in the American dining in protocol most of the time you will find that people eat salads before the entrees so you'll have a salad for it here and you might also find a salad. Some people actually use the knife to cut their salaries so yes actually will have that to know as you go work. You will find your fish and your fish knife you will find your pantry for you're on. Fair enough. So then at the top here and also on the slide you will find your dessert spoon and fork. We'll talk about how to use each of those in the next section. One other thing that you will find here is your bread plate and your butter knife. And then we'll talk a little bit about the glassware. So one of the things that I want to very much hammer on and get into detail is the differences between various types of glasses and why they aren't the way they are. So for instance you have here your red wine glass. So the red wine glass is a little bit bulkier on the sides and has all been closed and the reason for that is to tell is to preserve the flavor of the wine and also make changes chemistry. Getting in contact with the air. The white wine glass which mostly will be used when you eat some sort of seed dish is basically a little bit more thin and you also see that it is not as close as the top and not have both key on the on the sides and the middle your champagne flute is basically the thinnest one on the table. So the finish is glad that you have out there with most likely the champagne flute. One of the things that you should have when you have a champagne flute on the table is there is most likely going to be a taste that toasting involved in that event. Champagne is generally used for either toasting or desserts. Both of you have your water glass so the water glass generally is bulkier also has a port your stem as you can see over here sometimes is much larger than this and at times you might have a tea or coffee cup the tea and coffee cup will generally come with a liner. So now let's talk a little bit about how to use all of them. No I'm just not talk about the glass where we're now and we'll talk about how you use the utensils. But now we'll just talk about the glasses because it's easier to use that for you to see me without me sitting down. So one of the things that you should keep in mind when you use glassware that have a thin stem like the wine glass or the champagne is that you will always pick them up by the stem. And wine experts will tell you that the reason you do that is so with your body temperature you would not change the chemistry of the wine and thus change flavor. The water glass that you get is thicker and most likely will be heavier. So this is what you will actually pick by the thicker stuff that you have here. And also right underneath the back of the glass really read and discussed about the coffee cup and the tea cup and the previous lesson but what I would like to highlight though is whenever you do you the coffee cup make sure to put food on the line. OK. No it's stuck a little bit about when you sit down. How you sit down. So you see it when you go to such an event. Most of the time you will want to orientate yourself to find your place and so on before the seating actually takes place. So how do you do that most of the time. Well there will be name tags on the table that will enable you to find your feet very easily. And so before we actually sit down it's very important for you to just go behind your seat and just wait for the official party to sit down when it comes to formal dining. There will most likely be an official party involved. What is the official party mean to the Group of Eight people that are invited at that event. And so these people are the ones that sort of lead everything it has to do with the event in terms of the sequence of events. And so if say the Master of Ceremonies of that event says that everybody may be seated at one point. Well the official party has to be seated first and then everybody else sees them. OK so you've got to that point you got behind your seat and you are waiting for it yourself to be seated as it happens he can talk to people from left and from your right. It's very good etiquette to be very good to make sure you talk to both people on both sides both before you sit down and once that they have done that. Generally speaking though I know it's in the rule of British etiquette for instance to talk for no more than five minutes with persons on either side of yourself at a table on why it is a good guideline. I'm not exactly certain if that's curious for you to follow but it is good for you to try to follow that rule you know is this within five minutes or so to try to switch people. Now who do you held seat. Well if there's a lady on your right hand side you see that lady. Now if there is a lady on your left hand side that might not be have anybody help her sit down she needs someone to help her sit down. That will help her do so. Let's talk a little bit about seating people and why we do that. So a lot of people think that you know when you sit someone you help someone sit down just because you're just being courteous and you're being nice. Well not really. There's a logic behind it and that is that formally that especially these were some very long dresses some very high heels at times. And so it's really hard for them to sit down and not step on their dresses. And so in order to help them as they sit down and be prepared to sit down you pull the chairs here they pick up the side of the chair they will pull them on her. Then you will raise the chair slightly so they can drag them as they see fit. Now in doing so you will help them see themselves complete without destroying or in any way tarnishing their attire. And that's pretty much the logic behind it and that's why it's certainly so pleasant individual to do so. OK. That's pretty much all I have to talk about in this particular section. As you already noticed touched on a lot of things. So I would like to close that right now. My name is Andre but this is basic etiquette training course.