Author Topic: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?  (Read 24675 times)

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Yvaine

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #210 on: February 25, 2013, 01:05:48 AM »
Here the rule is: Cold dish - don't start eating until everybody has been served.
Warm dish - don't start eating until your two neighbours have been served.

That way no warm dishes are spoiled by going cold :D I actually thought that was pretty universal, so I was surprised to read your comment :)

I have never heard this! It seems sensible, though.

But I also think it's different in a restaurant where not everybody orders every course anyway. So maybe if you have soup, you wait till everybody who did order soup has theirs, but you don't have to sit and watch your soup go cold while waiting for someone who didn't order soup to get their entree.

Library Dragon

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #211 on: February 25, 2013, 01:11:11 AM »
MariaE:

Country and dish rules vary too.  In Italy you are expected to begin eating your pasta as soon as its served.  Since timing is everything for pasta you don't risk your pasta going cold or continuing to cook in a warm sauce.  This holds for a casual trattoria or upscale ristorante.

At home family style is different. 

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Mammavan3

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #212 on: February 25, 2013, 01:11:47 AM »
I must say I'm stunned to hear that some people think appetizers are always shared by everyone at the table. And I must be eating at all the wrong restaurants because all of the appetizers I've ever ordered would never be enough to pass around a table full of people - three medium stuffed mushrooms, two silver-dollar-sized crab cakes, eight tiny mussels or baby clams, five shrimp, or three half slices of melon wrapped with prosciutto. It's generally only a few bites meant to whet one's appetite for the meal to come.  Something like a hot or cold antipasto or pu pu platter, which is many times more expensive than any other appetizer, would be an exception to this.

When we eat out with family, we often share two or three appetizers, but that's generally because we're paying the bill and our guests are too polite to order individual appetizers. When eating out with friends, someone will generally ask if we want to order a few appetizers for the table or else someone will announce that's she's ordering the X and ask if anyone else would like to share it.  But we often order our own appetizers without sharing.

DH and I have been married 46 years. We ALWAYS cut a small piece of our entree and place it on the other's plate to sample. If either of us is engrossed in conversation and forgets to do this, neither of us would just reach over and take a small bite, even though the other would never mind. DH doesn't care for olives, and if some sneak their way into his food, he passes them to me. I would never just help myself to them without asking. It's even more important to extend the basic courtesies to those closest to you than to friends or acquaintances. To me, this is especially true with children, for whom we are supposed to be modeling appropriate behavior. So I feel that the mother was very rude indeed.

In my mind, assuming that an appetizer is always shared by everyone at the table may be a custom in some circles or areas but it is not required by the dictates of etiquette.

PeterM

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #213 on: February 25, 2013, 01:25:44 AM »
Here the rule is: Cold dish - don't start eating until everybody has been served.
Warm dish - don't start eating until your two neighbours have been served.

I think that makes far too much sense to ever catch on in the States.

MariaE

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #214 on: February 25, 2013, 02:13:54 AM »
Here the rule is: Cold dish - don't start eating until everybody has been served.
Warm dish - don't start eating until your two neighbours have been served.

I think that makes far too much sense to ever catch on in the States.

 ;D ;D ;D

Here the rule is: Cold dish - don't start eating until everybody has been served.
Warm dish - don't start eating until your two neighbours have been served.

That way no warm dishes are spoiled by going cold :D I actually thought that was pretty universal, so I was surprised to read your comment :)

I have never heard this! It seems sensible, though.

But I also think it's different in a restaurant where not everybody orders every course anyway. So maybe if you have soup, you wait till everybody who did order soup has theirs, but you don't have to sit and watch your soup go cold while waiting for someone who didn't order soup to get their entree.

Oh absolutely! The rule is per course, not per meal.
 
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DottyG

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #215 on: February 25, 2013, 02:16:09 AM »
Quote
it is often a bit awkward when only one person in the party is served a particular course and everyone else has to watch them eat it.

Yvaine already touched on this above, but I don't agree with this as a completely set in stone rule.

For instance, I was at dinner the other day and was the only one to order soup. It didn't come with my entree; it was an optional thing. I didn't have to wait for the rest of the table to get food before eating it. In fact, everyone would have thought I was completely crazy to do so.

I think we need to get away from a blanket rule in our minds as to whether its ok to eat if others aren't. Because it doesn't always apply.

Now, that said, there is an expectation that you wait until others get their entrees before starting (in my opinion). Because they're, basically, going to come out together. If they don't, it's usually because the waiter just has to go back and get the other tray with the remaining dishes.  Again, though, this is a grey area. If the table is huge, it could be that you just have to wait until your end gets your food. That's a "play it by ear" type of situation.

Venus193

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #216 on: February 25, 2013, 06:47:44 AM »
I've read that in hosted situations a considerate host or hostess should take that into consideration and say "Please don't wait; just start" when about four people are served.

Never heard the rule about hot vs. cold, but it makes sense.

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #217 on: February 25, 2013, 07:01:12 AM »
When my elder 2 were toddlers, and I do this now with my youngest, we'd order their meals when the waiter asks if anyone wants an appetizer, or with the drinks.  That way the little ones don't have to wait as long for their meal to arrive.  Works pretty well, except for one place that didn't bring out his chicken nuggets till after we had received our entrees.  ::)
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m2kbug

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #218 on: February 25, 2013, 10:38:43 AM »
I must say I'm stunned to hear that some people think appetizers are always shared by everyone at the table. And I must be eating at all the wrong restaurants because all of the appetizers I've ever ordered would never be enough to pass around a table full of people - three medium stuffed mushrooms, two silver-dollar-sized crab cakes, eight tiny mussels or baby clams, five shrimp, or three half slices of melon wrapped with prosciutto. It's generally only a few bites meant to whet one's appetite for the meal to come.   

In my mind, assuming that an appetizer is always shared by everyone at the table may be a custom in some circles or areas but it is not required by the dictates of etiquette.

I think for a lot of us, at least for me, I envisioned an appetizer that was large enough it could be shared among 4 people, which has typically been the case when we've ordered one.  You still only get one or two of the appetizer servings per person, as you would an individual appetizer, there's just enough for a whole group on one plate.  Eight potato skins or a basket of fried zucchini or onion bloom is an awful lot for one person as an appetizer, it's just always been a share type of deal, usually agreed upon in advance. 

Of course any appetizer that hits the table isn't an automatic free-for-all.  It's usually agreed upon or the person who ordered makes it clear they bought it to share, dig in.   

It sounds like restaurants are moving towards more of a "starter" type of appetizer made for one or two people, in which case, I would imagine it's more of an individual dish over a shared dish and I would not see sharing as a table as a "norm" in this case unless you order more than one for the table.

TootsNYC

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #219 on: February 25, 2013, 12:06:02 PM »
Here the rule is: Cold dish - don't start eating until everybody has been served.
Warm dish - don't start eating until your two neighbours have been served.

That way no warm dishes are spoiled by going cold :D I actually thought that was pretty universal, so I was surprised to read your comment :)

I have never heard this! It seems sensible, though.

But I also think it's different in a restaurant where not everybody orders every course anyway. So maybe if you have soup, you wait till everybody who did order soup has theirs, but you don't have to sit and watch your soup go cold while waiting for someone who didn't order soup to get their entree.


Miss Manners has addressed this as well, saying that in a restaurant situation where lots of meals are coming out, and one or two may be more delayed, you may start as soon as *most* of the people have been served.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2013, 12:08:14 PM by TootsNYC »

Asharah

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #220 on: February 27, 2013, 08:09:09 PM »
I read this entire thread with great interest.  My family usually shares appetizers, but sometimes, my DS orders one as his meal.  He does not have to share that. 

We were out to dinner with a very big party.  My son ordered an appetizer in place of a meal.  When the runner brought it out, someone at the other end of the table said to put it down there and that he would pass it down, even though the rest of the food was brought out at the same time.

By the time it got to my son, there was almost nothing left.  Because of how big the table was, I just assumed that someone had actually ordered that as an appetizer and that the kitchen messed up and just brought it out late.

There was no food for DS.  I asked the waiter and he commented that it already came out.  When the other person realized that he had passed my DS's dinner, he got defensive and said 'We always share appetizers.  He should know better than to order one just for himself.'. I made the waiter bring my DS another plate,  but that took some time.

Not every family does things the same way.  I would never take a plate away from my kids (13 and 10).  But, unless they were really hungry, they would share.  And if it was after one of their sporting activities, I would never expect them to share.
Hello, it may have come from the appetizer list on the menu, but that was your son's ENTIRE DINNER that he stole. I hope you made it clear to him that he had swiped your son's entire meal.

As I recall, somebody else here posted a similar story. She was visiting relatives and they went for lunch before she had to catch her train home. They ordered family style, but since OP was a vegetarian, she ordered something extra for herself since otherwise all she would have had was bread and salad. Food was served when she was in the ladies room and by the time she returned to table, somebody took her food, thinking it was an extra side despite it being set at OP's place and passed it around, leaving her with next to nothing for herself. She said nothing and started filling up on bread and salad. (There wasn't time to order and eat anything else before she had to leave, and this was in the UK where ordering something boxed up to go isn't normally done.) Somebody started admonishing her for only having bread and salad when she had a long train trip ahead of her. She let them know she had ordered something else for herself, but apparently they had all helped themselves to it while she was in the ladies room. Some of the relatives were a bit upset about her having to leave without having a real lunch. At that point OP just left to catch her train. Apparently after she left they deduced which Aunt was responsible for taking and passing the plate. OP gets a nasty e-mail from guilty Aunt's daughter, who wasn't even present, about how her poor mother cried all night from the scolding she received for taking OP's lunch, and it was all OP's fault for "making such a big deal about it."  ???
Asharah

DottyG

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #221 on: February 27, 2013, 08:37:24 PM »
In that situation, I can see how that could have been an unfortunate accident - but not something that required a scolding from the group. The girl who had to leave sounds like she handled it with grace. But shame on the relatives for scolding the aunt.

If a meal is family style, it's understandable that an accident like this could happen.


snowdragon

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #222 on: February 27, 2013, 11:13:29 PM »
I've skimmed the thread - but I would have been livid if someone did that to me. I do not share food or drink with anyone and I would simply have stopped eating at the point when someone else took my food.  ( and if I were the one paying for my meal, I would refuse to pay for something that was taken from me)

Nikko-chan

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #223 on: February 27, 2013, 11:18:50 PM »
I've skimmed the thread - but I would have been livid if someone did that to me. I do not share food or drink with anyone and I would simply have stopped eating at the point when someone else took my food.  ( and if I were the one paying for my meal, I would refuse to pay for something that was taken from me)

I agree with this. I am much the same way. Usually I order an appetizer as my meal, so for someone to presume that they can eat the whole thing would be beyond the pale. Then again, normally I don't dine in large groups, and usually it's just me and my sister, and she knows I like getting apps for my meal, so all is good :)

Asharah

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #224 on: February 28, 2013, 01:08:12 AM »
In that situation, I can see how that could have been an unfortunate accident - but not something that required a scolding from the group. The girl who had to leave sounds like she handled it with grace. But shame on the relatives for scolding the aunt.

If a meal is family style, it's understandable that an accident like this could happen.
I got the sense Auntie was a bit of a drama queen, and since OP had already left, we don't really know if she got scolded or if she was just trying to somehow "blame the victim" so she wouldn't have to take responsibility for taking OP's lunch. I mean she lied to her daughter about OP "making a big deal" so she could be lying about the rest of the family scolding her.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 01:28:02 AM by Asharah »
Asharah