How to set a perfect table

When I was in high school, I worked for a fancy restaurant. The staff was trained (and really, initiated) by having to serve our extremely severe general manager a meal. Many years later, I’ve never forgotten how to set a table. Please, forgive the terrible diagram.
From left to right…..
· Napkin (some folks place it on top of the plates….purists to the left)
· Side plate (and bread knife on top)
· Salad fork
· Dinner fork
· Dinner plate (with salad plate on top)
· Dinner knife (blade facing the plate)
· Teaspoon
· Soup spoon
· Immediately above the plate is the dessert fork (prongs to the right), and above that, the dessert spoon (tip of the spoon to the left)

Glasses (from left to right)
· Water glass
· Red wine glass
· White glass

When the savoury courses are done and cleared, the only things that should be on the table are the dessert fork and knife. Coffee cup and saucer are added then, just in time for the dessert course.

–By Karen Cleveland

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