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a la carte

food offered with a separate price for each food item on the menu

a la mode

topped with ice cream


light food or beverage that begins a meal and is designed to stimulate the appetite

au jus

serving food with the pan drippings from which the fat has been skimmed


glasses of many shapes and sizes used for a variety of purposes

blue plate service

a type of meal service in which the plates are filled in the kitchen, carried to the dining room, and served

buffet service

style of meal service in which a large table or buffet holds a variety of food items, the serving dishes and utensils, dinnerware, flatware, and napkins and from which guests serve themselves

compromise service

a combination of English and formal service. The main course of the meal is served at the table by the host and the remainder of the meal is served in individual portions from the kitchen.


the arrangement of the tableware that each diner will need for a meal; also called a place setting


plates, cups, saucers, and bowls

dutch treat

an arrangement of paying in which each person pays his own way

English service

a style of meal service in which the plates are served by the host and/or hostess and passed around the table until each guest has been served


the main course of a meal


manners established by society

family service

a service style that allows diners to join others in a setting where large dishes of food are placed on a table for self-service

formal service

when you are served with porcelain or fine china


money charged or left as a tip for service


tableware, such as bowls, tureens, and pitchers, used to serve food and liquids

open stock

tableware that can be purchased as individual pieces


an arrangement with a restaurant to hold a table, or with a hotel to hold a room, for a guest on a given date at a given time


glassware with three distinct parts: a bowl, a stem, and a base

table appointments

all the items needed at the table to serve and eat a meal

table linens

tablecloths, placemats, and napkins

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