Author Topic: Etiquette Advice  (Read 7367 times)

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Ehelldame

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Etiquette Advice
« on: December 06, 2006, 12:28:29 PM »
This thread is for etiquette advice you'd like to see in a cookbook/hostessing book or something you'd like to share.

Lisbeth

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2006, 12:53:04 PM »
1) Don't be the diet police.  Even if you're a doctor or a dietician, it's not your job as a host/ess to monitor the calorie, fat, cholesterol, or carb volume of your guests or give unsolicited advice about weight loss.  If you think someone is not eating healthy at your event, keep it to yourself.  Also, don't let any of your guests act as the diet police either.

2) If your guests choose not to consume something you have offered, keep your disappointment to yourself.

3) Don't allow guests to dominate the conversation at the expense of other guests.  If you see that other guests have tuned out because one or more of your guests have turned out to be really windy, it's your job to step in and pull non-participating guests into the conversation.  If your windy guests need a clue, ask them discreetly and quietly to shelve the subject and allow others to participate.

4) Also, don't allow the conversation to get really aggressive to the point that guests are looking uncomfortable.  If it starts to get really heated, step in and ask your guests to ratchet down the volume and/or change the subject.

5) If the conversation stalls out, be the person to get it restarted.  Make sure all your guests are properly introduced.  If you are aware that a topic of conversation is really uncomfortable for a guest, change the subject for that guest's benefit.

« Last Edit: December 06, 2006, 12:56:26 PM by KeenReader »
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Suze

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2006, 06:49:13 PM »

2) If your guests choose not to consume something you have offered, keep your disappointment to yourself.


And please if they say they are allergic - don't push them to "just taste it, a little bit won't hurt you"  it might.
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NotCinderell

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2006, 03:36:23 PM »
Remind hostesses that it's actually an etiquette violation for a guest to tell a hostess their dietary restrictions if the hostess doesn't ask first.  Therefore, if hostesses don't want guests pretending they're not hungry, it's best to inquire about dietary restrictions beforehand.

Lisbeth

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2006, 02:46:36 PM »
Some other etiquette advice:

For hosts:
1) If the occasion is to be a potluck, indicate that at the time you extend the invitation.  Otherwise, it is your duty to provide all the food/drinks to be served.
2) While it is gracious of guests to offer to bring things, don't take them up on their offer unless they can realistically bring something you would like.  And don't "expect" them to offer-if they don't do so, don't ask them to bring anything but themselves and good spirits.
3) Don't delay the meal to wait for late guests.  Provide a realistic arrival and starting time, and if this has to change before the event takes place, notify your guests.  Serve the meal at the stated time.
4) Set the table and make whatever other preparations are necessary before the stated arrival time for guests.  Don't expect guests to assist you with setting up or with clean-up, but if they volunteer, feel free to allow them to assist (moderately).
5) If guests are assisting with setting up or with clean-up, remember, they're neither slaves nor hired help.  Don't expect them to do all the work.

For guests:
1) If the host/ess hasn't indicated that the occasion is a potluck, don't bring any food with you that won't be served to other guests.  Tend to your specialized dietary needs before or after the occasion, or very, very discreetly if you absolutely need to do so during the occasion.
2) While it is gracious of guests to offer to bring things, don't do so if it isn't practical.  A guest who makes such an offer that is accepted by the host/ess should be prepared to follow up.
3) Arrive on time, not late or early.  If you know in advance that this isn't possible, let the host/ess know that.  Apologize sincerely for your untimely arrival.
4) Unless the host/ess has indicated that you should go ahead and eat, wait for everyone to be served before you begin.  If the host/ess wishes to say prayers before the meal begins, but you do not wish to participate, remain silent and do not eat until the prayer concludes.  It is not necessary to leave the table, but do not indicate through speech or body language that you do not endorse the prayer.  If you wish to pray before beginning to eat and no prayers are said, do so quietly and discreetly. 
5) Do not comment about foods or drinks served that are not to your taste-simply decline to eat them.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2006, 04:47:43 PM by KeenReader »
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rockingrandma

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2007, 03:48:51 AM »
For Guests: 
1)  While it is very flattering when you ask for the recipe for something your host has served, do not get offended if said host tells you it's a recipe they'd rather not give out.  Becoming belligerent or giving the cook the "cold shoulder" is uncalled for; after all, Chef Boyardee would tell you the same thing if you asked exactly how to make their ravioli.

2)  If your host does give you the recipe, then tells you they tweak it with a dash of this and a pinch of that, DO NOT accuse them of giving you the wrong recipe when you don't pay attention and yours doesn't come out exactly the same way. 

(in regards to #2, would it be ok for the guest to ask to watch the host prepare the dish and take notes if theirs doesn't come out the same?)

FoxPaws

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2007, 04:12:02 AM »
Any food taken to a potluck should be ready to serve when it arrives (except for briefly re-warming). Do not pick up the ingredients at the grocery store on the way over with the intent of "putting it together" when you get there. Use disposable or replaceable serving dishes, and mark them in some way if you'd like them returned (an address label works great for this). You will make your hosts' permanent guest list if you provide serving utensils as well.

Respect your hosts' wishes regarding helping out, doing dishes, etc. It is polite to offer, but do not insist if you are turned down. Some of us really do prefer to clean our own kitchens.



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Ondine

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2007, 11:53:15 PM »

Guests: I would prefer you tell me beforehand if you have special dietary needs (diabetic, IBS, vegetarian) so that I can make something you can eat, rather than telling me when you arrive that you cannot eat anything because it does not agree with you/it is against your religion/ you have an allergy to said food.

Lisbeth

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2007, 11:56:01 PM »

Guests: I would prefer you tell me beforehand if you have special dietary needs (diabetic, IBS, vegetarian) so that I can make something you can eat, rather than telling me when you arrive that you cannot eat anything because it does not agree with you/it is against your religion/ you have an allergy to said food.

Actually, it's the host's job to ask and the guests' jobs to refrain from volunteering this information until asked.

And it's not the host's job to be a short-order cook.  If the guests can't or won't eat what's been provided even after telling you about their needs, that's their problem.  Don't make it yours by fretting that they're not eating.
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MadMadge43

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2007, 12:10:00 AM »
Host: Do not wait too long to have dinner served unless you are providing appetizers.

Host: Have everything prepared except for last minute put together as to maximize socializing with your guests.

Guest: Bring a hostess present, if that hostess present is a bottle of wine or other consumable do not expect it to be served.

Guest: Arrive on time.

Peaches737

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2007, 09:54:12 PM »
I nearly had a meltdown this mother's day.  I had something in the microwave, a dish in the oven, and was frying on the stovetop.  Three of the mothers (mine, my DH's, and my sisters MIL) came at the same time, and needed each.

I am usually, what my MIL calls a "calm hostess".  I adore them all, but I had things I was cooking.  As lovely as it was for them to bring flowers, I had to put my sister in charge of the frying pan to find the vases.

I think I was a little snarkier than usual, because I was worried about my mom.  (Had hip surgery the next day--doing great) 

By the middle of the BBQ, I was really wanting people out of my kitchen.  It was sunny and 70/ beautiful weather, but couldn't politely request that people leave the kitchen.

In a roundabout way---getting back to topic----Stay out of my kitchen when I am cooking--and don't hork my stove!

caranfin

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2007, 11:47:20 AM »
1) Don't be the diet police.  Even if you're a doctor or a dietician, it's not your job as a host/ess to monitor the calorie, fat, cholesterol, or carb volume of your guests or give unsolicited advice about weight loss.  If you think someone is not eating healthy at your event, keep it to yourself.  Also, don't let any of your guests act as the diet police either.

And the converse is, if your guest declines something because he/she is on a diet, do not hound them into eating it.
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Suze

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #12 on: May 27, 2007, 02:39:44 PM »

By the middle of the BBQ, I was really wanting people out of my kitchen.  It was sunny and 70/ beautiful weather, but couldn't politely request that people leave the kitchen.


That's when you make a big joke about it. Look at the lot of them and tell them "Mommy's cooking and it is too pretty to be inside and to get their butts outside and play"  Done in your best Mommy voice of course.

Mom used this for years after we ALL grew up - even used it on DAD

I used a variant on it at a party one time. I was pulling sodas and people were trouping in and out of my space and I almost spilled on someone more than once.  Kidlets being the worst. (under 8 crowd) 

Told them "Everybody under 3 feet tall out - out - out"  Of course the guys all went out on their knees.

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twinkletoes

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2007, 03:07:32 PM »
Hosts:  Label food and point out if there might be any allergens or dietary restrictions in it that are not immediately obvious.  You don't need to put a warning about nut allergies for your pecan pie, but it might be nice to note that the double-chocolate brownies have nuts and eggs in them.

This might not be etiquette advice in the traditional sense, but I'd like sections on:

-How to properly set a table

-Which glass to use with a specific drink (ie, wine glass vs. champagne, etc.)

-Maybe a few sample meals set up (perhaps along the lines of a theme).  If you want to have everyone over to watch the Big Game, which foods would work best for a crowd, that sort of thing.

-If one is having a cocktail party, how many servings one should have available for the guests.  I can never keep this straight, and I always have way too much food on hand.  Although, I think it's better to have leftovers for a week instead of sparse servings....

-A timeline of things to do to prepare for an event.  Which foods can be prepared the night before, that sort of thing.

-A guideline regarding a well-stocked bar - what sort of alcohol should someone keep on hand.

glendaledebby

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Re: Etiquette Advice
« Reply #14 on: August 19, 2007, 04:33:45 PM »
FOR GUESTS:  Please pay attention when you are using the bathroom.  Does the hostess have paper wipes for wiping your hands after washing them?  Does your hostess have hand towels set out for the same purpose?  If so please use those and refrain from using the decorator towels hanging in the bathroom.  Now if the hostess has not supplied separate paper towels or hand towel then use the decorator towels!

FOR HOSTESS:  If you do not want the expensive deorator towels to be used by your guests then put out paper towels or hand towels in the bathrooms.