Young woman eating gourmet food at restaurant.
Why It's Technically Polite To Leave Food On The
Plate At
Fancy Restaurants
By Stacie Adams
Every culture has its own dining rules and guidelines that guests are expected to follow during meals. For example, arriving on time or early for dinner in Canada is considered a highly inconsiderate move, and Egypt has a tradition where diners replenish each other's glasses of wine, but never their own.
Similarly, in China, leaving some food on your plate at the end of a meal is considered good form, as it shows the host you're fully satisfied and require no more nourishment. This piece of etiquette also applies when eating from community plates, which is quite common in China.
In this case, diners are urged to leave food on shared plates or risk embarrassing the host, as taking the last bit of food gives the impression that the host did not provide enough for the table. While it's a distinctly Chinese tradition, it's easy to see how this etiquette rule translates to many other cultures regarding politeness and fine dining.