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Enjoy your meal

  1. Aug 2, 2010 #1

    Monique

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    I just recently learned that it is a faux pas to say "enjoy your meal", at least when you believe in social etiquette. Apparently by saying it you are questioning the quality of the food, or at least implying that the meal might not be good :confused:

    So if you can't wish your fellow table mates a good meal, what are you supposed to say when you start eating? I can't imagine that it is good practice to just start eating.

    Following the same etiquette, you can also not say that the wine is good. That would be insulting to the person that picked the wine, since it should be a give that the sommelier (or whoever took care of the wine) presented a good one.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 2, 2010 #2

    Office_Shredder

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    I think someone's pulling your leg.
     
  4. Aug 2, 2010 #3

    Evo

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    Never heard of this either.
     
  5. Aug 2, 2010 #4

    lisab

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    I'm not aware of those particular rules of etiquette. Isn't "bon appetit" basically the same thing (not literally but in spirit)?

    One thing that I do find annoying is when a waiter asks a diner, "Are you still working on that?" If eating food counts as "work," perhaps it should not be eaten.
     
  6. Aug 2, 2010 #5
    Its probably the way you say it. If you say it very sly, then people would be quick to think that you've done something to the food.
     
  7. Aug 2, 2010 #6

    Monique

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    I saw it at a TV show, the host cringed when his guest said "bon appetit/enjoy your meal" and again when she said the wine was good (to which he commented "of course it is good"). I looked it up on the internet and indeed, all the etiquette rules I've read say the same thing. Caterers are also not supposed to ask whether the meal was good (http://www.serveerkunde.be/etiquette.html or http://www.mt.nl/1/8268/home/etiquette-manieren-leren.html).

    I can't seem to find a good reference of an english site, but here's one:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2017
  8. Aug 2, 2010 #7

    Office_Shredder

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    Oh, so it's a French thing.
     
  9. Aug 2, 2010 #8

    lisab

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    Aaaaah...so the *actual* translation of "bon appetit" is, "Watch out for that fingernail of mine that went missing during the preparation of this meal!"

    See, they don't tell you everything in traveller's little translation books.
     
  10. Aug 2, 2010 #9

    cronxeh

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    Social Etiquette is for wankers. I curse, use foul language, and laugh out loud, chewing my food with my mouth open when we are hanging out with friends. There is nothing more natural than being yourself, and if people don't like who you are, well there are 2 fingers and plenty of fists to back them up :biggrin:
     
  11. Aug 2, 2010 #10
    Enjoy your meal. And that goes for your little dog too.
     
  12. Aug 2, 2010 #11
    "bon appetit" really isn't the same idea as "enjoy your meal". It's more, "I hope your stomach is strong enough to endure what's coming." :biggrin:

    I suppose, though, yes, if you wanted to parse "enjoy your meal" as a dining wish, the comeback could well be, "Why? Is there some reason I may not?" But I'm sort of a word-goof that way, because when a restaurant server asks me, "Do you have any questions" I tend to look at them and tell them that I have many questions, various and sundry, although that none of them pertain to that evening's special meal preparations. However, if they're prepared to discuss the deeper meanings of the universe with me, they ought to pull up a chair. My friends routinely tell me to shut up.

    But that's off of it. Stupid things people say at meals. Well, I'm guessing that, "Enjoy your meal" is one of the less stupid things one could say, assuming appearing gauche to people who likely don't even know what the word "gauche" means doesn't bother you. Maybe that's why certain groups of people invented saying grace at dinner so they wouldn't have to face the whole "bon appetit" or "Enjoy your meal" debacle. Or perhaps that's why the word "Cheers!" was invented. I tend to say something like, "Thank you for joining me. Please, help yourselves. Let me know if you'd like more wine."

    I'm glad to hear I ought to avoid wishing people good appetites and/or meal enjoyment. Those sound as if they're pressure loaded.
     
  13. Aug 2, 2010 #12

    lisab

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    Found a site with all sorts of "enjoy your meal"-type sentiments:

    http://www.omniglot.com/language/phrases/bonappetit.htm

    The English ones are

    Bon appetit! Enjoy your meal! (frm)
    Enjoy! Tuck in! Get stuck in! Eat already! (inf/slang)
    Happy eating! Get your laughing gear round this! (inf/slang)

    Lol, "laughing gear"!?!
     
  14. Aug 2, 2010 #13

    turbo

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    "Shove this in your pie-hole" would be a good one.
     
  15. Aug 2, 2010 #14
    I've been to a fair share of fancy restaurants with at least one of them being ranked in the top 10 French restaurants in the country (US). After the waiter finishes his spiel explaining each part of the dish he almost always says "bon app├ętit" or "enjoy".
     
  16. Aug 2, 2010 #15

    Office_Shredder

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    Something to do with not talking about bodily functions at the dinner table. Apparently that extends to... eating?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/11/fashion/11pside.html
     
  17. Aug 2, 2010 #16
    lol, i love this word, "vulgar". it is from latin, and it means "common", as in "the common people". when the church of rome translated the bible into latin, it was called the vulgate, a book that was in the tongue of the common people instead of greek and hebrew.

    so, what do i think about these etiquettists? they are elitists. these are a bunch of social rules thought up by the wealthy leisure class, with huge egos and thin skins. i could care less what they think of me, or my use of monosyllabic, "vulgar" words.

    seriously, and how rude for the host to cringe and show judgement on his guest. especially in such a public way. seems like poor etiquette to me. unless, that is, that is the point of etiquette.
     
  18. Aug 2, 2010 #17

    Monique

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    Of course, it is to show that you are so much better than the commoner :wink:

    From the discussion I get the impression that it is an etiquette that has long been out of date, kept in life by an elitist few.. I guess it's fine to wish others a tasty meal.
     
  19. Aug 2, 2010 #18

    lisab

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    That's an excellent point. Ettiquette is not meant to divide the "common" people from the "elite."

    The purpose of etiquette is to put people at ease. It's to provide a bit of guidance on what you're "supposed to do" in social situations where you're with people you don't know well. This guidance should be just a simple path, not a mine field.
     
  20. Aug 2, 2010 #19
    This is why I don't believe in formal etiquette :)
     
  21. Aug 2, 2010 #20

    Borek

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    We, PFers, are elite, so whatever we define as being correct becomes etiquette.

    In Polish it is faux pas to not say "smacznego" (something like "let it taste well") when you start to eat with others.
     
  22. Aug 2, 2010 #21

    Monique

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    Yes, we say "eet smakelijk" and I think it would be very strange not to say anything before you start to eat.
     
  23. Aug 2, 2010 #22

    lisab

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    I suppose we could comment about the weather, or how the local sports team is doing :biggrin:.
     
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