Style & Entertaining Launches Newest Offering—Creative, Interactive and Fun Events Teaching Essential Business Dining Etiquette Skills

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Since 2005, Style & Entertaining’s ( award-winning Dinner Party Kits have helped thousands host the perfect soirée by making entertaining at home not only easy and enjoyable but a fun learning experience as well. An increasing amount of business is conducted over the dinner table, whether entertaining clients at a restaurant or at home. Today, the business's deal is in the dinner details. Make a lasting impression—whether it is for corporate team-building, holiday party or client appreciation dinner, rest assured this experience will be something they will not soon forget.

Learning how to avoid making a faux pas at the big dinner meeting may well be the key factor that "outclasses the competition" and ensures that your entertainment budget is driving business…not driving business away.

Style & Entertaining has partnered with a variety of venues throughout the San Francisco Bay Area as well as in key US business cities, offering corporate clients the opportunity to host a series of events close to their office. Each event features an elegant three-course business dining experience, food and wine pairing lessons and interactive tastings of award-winning Napa Valley and Sonoma Valley wines. They serve as the perfect break from a long day of meetings.

“In today’s global marketplace, the reality is that how you mind your multicultural dining manners is a reflection of your company’s corporate culture," according to Style & Entertaining’s founder Christine Martin, with 20 years of international business experience entertaining clients from all over the world. " Whether at home or abroad, it is important that businessmen and women have a complete understanding of how to conduct themselves when entertaining or being entertained.”

Guests explore and refine:

  • Fundamentals of Wine & Food Pairing serving San Francisco’s healthy cuisines—including pairing fruits and vegetables with wines and testing meat temperatures by touch.
  • Decoding “wine speak” and learning how to select and serve the best wines with each course, as well as the extraordinary difference that Riedel wine glasses make in appreciating wine.
  • Planning for stress-free business entertaining and learning how to set an elegant dinner party table and design simple yet elegant floral arrangements.
  • Dos and taboos of business hospitality: styles of eating, silverware savvy, navigating the place setting, managing difficult foods, and manners at the table, including dinner table “Netiquette”.

Guests receive a Gourmet Dinner Party Kit—including a discount coupon for Riedel Stemware—that offers them the opportunity to recreate their business dining experience for colleagues and clients at home. Back in the office all are certain to talk about the fun they had honing their food and wine pairing skills and polishing their business dining etiquette techniques—keys to building team camaraderie and business relationships.

Style & Entertaining’s Top 10 Essential Business Dining Etiquette skills business people need to know.

1) Savior Faire IS Everywhere
How well business people carry off a social gathering is part of a larger business relationship picture. Their entertaining style not only reflects who they are, but also reflects upon their company.

2) Be Wine Saavy
The effort business people put into wine selection not only helps them entertain successfully, but also helps them appear confident and in charge.

3) When to Talk Shop
Hold off on any specific or focused business discussion until after the main course is finished. That way, guests can focus on getting to know each other and on enjoying the good food.

8) Proper Table “Netiquette”
The dinner table isn’t an office desk and to think so is rude. Computers off! Phones off! Period! Be present for guests.

4) Host/Guest Manners
When dining in a restaurant, always let guests order first. Begin eating when—and only when—everyone is served and the host has started eating. This is true for all the courses served at the meal.

5) Be Engaging
Between courses, it’s perfectly acceptable to put elbows on the table. Leaning forward with elbows on the edge of the table and hands clasped in front projects an image of being attentive and listening closely to the speaker.

6) Know Your Table Manners
Throughout the meal the server will serve the food from the left and remove empty plates from the right. At the end of the course, place utensils side by side diagonally across the plate, this indicates that you have finished.

7) Be Respectful
The way that business people treat service staff is certain to be noticed. Never "help" the servers by handing them plates, holding glasses for them to fill and the biggest faux pas of all, stacking plates. Be aware that they are professionals and will only clear plates after the last person has finished eating.

9) Be Cool
Showing proficiency in getting the dinner organized, keeping it running smoothly, and staying cheerful and relaxed will inevitably strike business associates favorably and help business people stand out at the office.

10) Say Thank You
Remember to thank the host for a wonderful evening; not to do so is rude. Sending a hand written thank-you note is an opportunity to differentiate business people from their competition.

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Christine Martin
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