Table manners are the ultimate way to show respect to your gracious host. Whether you are sitting down with old friends, or new partners, there are always certain manners to follow. However, the rules that apply to ensure that you do not offend your host, dining guests, or the culinary establishment you frequent, vary significantly depending on where you are in the world.
In Italy, it is polite to always follow the lead of the host and to remain standing until you are invited to sit down at a table. The host will also be the first person to sit, eat, give a toast and get up at the end of the meal. Good to know for this unique dining experience in Rome! Similarly, if you are dining in Colombia for example, you should wait to be seated by the host. In Colombia you should pass all of your dishes to your left when dining at a table, never your right.
In selected Asian countries and parts of the Middle East, meals are traditionally served on low tables, or on a rug on the floor. Take India for example where in a traditional household, meals are served on a rug on the floor and people sit around in a circle to dine. Unlike in European countries, for example, Indians favor eating with their hands but only use their right hand when eating.
For more facts about the dining etiquette in different parts of the world, have a look at this popular food guide created by Ard na Sidhe for more information.