Manner #6: Party Buffet

Manner #6: Six Manners to Remember for the Party Buffet

Christmas season is here and that also means Christmas parties. We have at least a few to go to that will involve buffet style-serve yourself- food. I thought we needed to go over a few buffet manners before we hit the parties.
Manner: Here are some manners we went over for a buffet:

1. Don’t double dip. (And biting one end of the chip and turning it around and dipping the other end counts as double dipping. At your own table with your own family that is one thing, but not in a party setting.) Spoon some dip onto your plate.

2. Don’t pile your plate sky high. Be aware of portion size and take modest amounts. (We are at a party people, not at Chuck-o-Rama). And once everyone has made it through the buffet line, you can always go back for more.

3. Don’t hog certain foods. Let everyone have a chance to taste all the foods. For example, don’t eat most of the shrimp in the shrimp cocktail or campout at your favorite dip so it makes it difficult for others to get in there.

4. Don’t complain about the food. Just pass it on by if you don’t like something.

5. Use the serving utensils provided (not your fingers) and always put them back on the dishes or platters.

6. Make sure to say thank you to the hostess before you leave.

Practice: We went to Pizza Pie Cafe– a pizza/pasta/salad buffet (I am in a non-cooking seasonal funk. This was the third dinner out of the week. We practiced the no double dipping rule with chips and queso earlier in the week.) But it turned out to be the perfect place to teach buffet manners. We went at a non-peak hour so I could take plenty of time with my kids through the line and teach them the tips above as we went along. My favorite moment of the night was when my son and I got to the pasta service area. We were supposed to tell the worker what pasta we wanted. Instead my son reached under the sneeze guard (there was about a 2 inch gap) to pick up a noodle with his fingers. “This one!” It gave me a chance to teach him about boundaries and germs. I also walked my daughter through the salad bar. We got to practice using the serving utensils and not piling our plate too full. She started nibbling on her veggies as we went through, (I am guilty of this. My theory was if I eat as I go it frees up plate space for the food at the end of the buffet, right?) so I was able to teach her about delaying gratification until you are seated at the table. It also feels less germy and less white trashish when you wait to eat until you are seated.Follow-Up: We have a family Christmas party next week. We’ll see how it goes. Hopefully these tips will help you at your family, church, neighborhood or work Christmas party. Tis’ the season!

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