International dining etiquette

There’s an interesting piece on MSNBC Travel summarizing a few international rules for dining. It contains some familiar ones, like don’t eat with your left hand in India, or don’t order a cappuccino after noon in Italy. Actually that one isn’t such a problem. Italians are pretty happy to just flat out ignore you if you do ask for a cappuccino in the afternoon. It’s sometimes fun to order a decaf one, just to see how they react. And if you’re especially brave, order a tall decaf frappuccino. Just don’t blame me if you get hurt.

There are a couple of recommendations in the article that I should already know but didn’t. Apparently in Thailand the fork is used for putting food on the spoon, not for putting food in your mouth. I eat Thai food all the time and I never knew this.

There’s one tip in there that I didn’t know but which makes a lot of sense. In Georgia (I assume the country, not the state) it’s expected that you drink a glass of wine in one go instead of sipping. I think I know why this is. In my experience Georgian wine is terrible, like drinking super-sweetened garbage water, so if you ever find yourself in a position where you’re expected to drink it you really want to get it over with as quickly as possible.