As travelers, two of the greatest things we can do are: eat and be grateful to those who feed us while we’re away. And one way to show that gratitude is by doing our best not to be tacky at the table or unknowingly offend someone we’re dining with because we tried to eat the same way we eat in our homes, in someone else’s.
I think this old French author said it best:
To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art. —François de La Rochefoucauld
I’m not saying you have to be so well-versed that you’re certain of the direction you’re supposed to scoop your spoon for soup at a black tie dinner, that’s just not most of our lives, but just don’t be that person if you can avoid it.
Did you know in Italy the host is supposed to be the first to sit, eat and get up? Or that in Colombia it’s polite to leave a small amount of food on your plate? In Russia, men will pour drinks for the women seated next to them.
There’s so much to know, but in the interest of saving you from me telling you all about it, here’s a pretty infographic from these lovely people in Ireland to show you instead.