Kitchen Matters


Remembering how to set the table has always been something that I pretend is on my to-do list, but never really makes it there. Despite my penchant for a dinner party and the amount of time I spend in restaurants, it's never actually permeated by brain on which side my fork should land. For everyone in the same boat, here's a quick rundown: 

When setting the table for an informal meal, there are really only a couple of hard and fast rules. Once you’ve got the basics down, simply add utensils for each element of the meal.

  • Forks to the left of the plate, knives and spoons to the right.
  • Knife blades always face the plate.
  • Napkins are to the left of the fork or on the plate.
  • Glasses to the top right.

    When the vibe starts heading in a more formal direction, there are couple of extra bits to keep in mind.
  • Stop at three of one utensil on the table, with the exception of an oyster fork in addition to three other forks. (I know... who has that many forks?)
  • When three or more courses are served before dessert, the fourth course utensils arrive with the fourth course plates. This also goes for dessert and, optionally, the salad course.
  • Utensil placement goes chronologically with each course from the outside to the inside. (First course goes furthest from the plate on either side.)
  • Water goblet goes directly above the knives and all glasses should top out at 5. (I knooooow, who has that many glasses??)

Kitchen Matters is a series of poster-style graphics and illustrations designed to improve life in the kitchen, from planning and shopping to chopping, cooking, and breaking bread. They aim to take the stress out of the entire cooking experience by creating room for connecting to food and the people with whom it’s shared.

by Christie Little