No matter if you are dining at a Michelin Star restaurant, or in just a standard restaurant, it is a common courtesy to respect the restaurant and people inside. That includes the people serving you food, those cooking the food, and all the other guests around. Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. And if you have that awareness, it means you have good manners. With that being said, here are 7 rules you should follow at any restaurant. And no, none of them is about which fork you use.
People often think everyone that works at a restaurant is a server. And that you can ask anybody about your order. Now, a busboy is somewhat of a murky profession. There is no proper explanation, and strict rules what the busboy should do. But as a general rule of thumb, a busboy is someone who cleans your table, brings napkins to the table, and anything else in regard of fine dining experience. A server, on the other hand, is the one who takes your order and brings your food. With that in mind, never ask the busboy what is happening with your order. Or ask them to bring you the check. That is the server’s job. The busboy has his hands full with many other things.
There is no excuse for snapping your fingers at server, a busboy, or anyone else in a restaurant setting. It is one of the worst things you can do. And as you can expect, it is among the top 3 things that pisses servers off. It is a rule, but also a warning. Nobody knows what you might be asking when you snap your fingers. Be patient, the waiter will come by your table when needed, and you can ask whatever you need.
This is a rule for couples. Don’t be the one that sits in the same side of an otherwise empty booth. The restaurant is not the place for your cuteness, cuddling, and other romantic stuff. Speaking of that, do not ever sit on the same side and start aggressively making out. The restaurant is not the appropriate venue for that. Just sit like normal people do, and keep the cuddling for after.
Be careful when looking at the menu. Do not order something you do not know what is it. Or just ask the waiter before ordering. You cannot send the food back because it has ingredients that might hamper your gluten intolerance. It is your mistake that you didn’t pay attention to the ingredients. That being said, there are legitimate reasons for sending food back to the kitchen. Your mistaken order is not one of them.
Let’s just say that nobody is rushing you through your meal. And the restaurant will never hurry you just so that they can free up a table. But that being said, if you continue your conversation 20 minutes after the bill is paid and you have just water on the table, it is time to go. While you are finishing your conversation after a paid bill, some people might be waiting for a table so that they can eat.
We are living in an era where we use our phones for basically everything. However, if your flash is popping in a dark restaurant just so that you can post your meal on Instagram, it is a problem. Or if your 15 person birthday dinner includes pausing the meal so that you can take 100 different pictures of a group photo on 10 different phones, you do not belong in a restaurant. A restaurant is a place for conversation, dining, and just enjoying yourself. It is not a place for taking hundreds of pictures.
If the whole table wants to forego dessert, don’t be the one ordering dessert and coffee. If the table wants to move on with their lives, then it is time to go home. If you are the one ordering a dessert, you deserve to be left alone behind. Dessert and coffee is always a group and “we” decision.