Table Manners - Continental Style Dining Hero Label

Table Manners - Continental Style Dining

After cutting a bite, how do you use your fork to eat the bite you cut?

In this video we look at how to correctly hold your fork in your left (or non-dominant hand) when cutting with a knife. In the continental style of dining the fork stays in the same hand, with the same grip, when the food is brought to the mouth. The tines stay pointed down the whole time in this style of eating and the fork stays in the left hand. The knife is available as a pusher. This is called the 'continental style' of dining although it is used throughout American as well. In the 'American style' the fork is transferred to the right hand and the grip changes, putting the fork in a tines up position. It is perfectly okay in America to switch between styles, even during the same course. 

Why not default to the American style in America? 

The historical reasons for this behavior are not perfectly clear but one thing is. The American style is not always the easiest. Some people call it the zigzag style because the fork is passed back and forth between hands over the course of a meal. Often it is simpler and easier to just use the fork in the left hand after cutting. For this reason, this style is preferred by many and remains in use throughout the United States.