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Jun 26, 2008 10:42 PM

Picking Up Lamb Chops at Dinner?

What's acceptable at a nice restaurant? Pick them up? Cut them with a steak knife? If you cut them, can you then finish off the bone by picking it up??? Thanks!

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  1. If they are intended to be picked up, which can be quite acceptable if done in a "genteel manner", they should have those little paper booties on them.

    1. This has been discussed pretty thoroughly (albeit with somewhat of a business dinner slant) here:

      The general consensus seems to be that classical etiquette does allow picking them up, but it also presupposes that the restaurant will provide a finger bowl for you to clean your hands afterward. And I don't recall ever being offered a finger bowl for anything other than lobster and shellfish dishes. So the quandary remains...

      1. One of my favorite things, so I'm not going to waste a bit! What I can't cut off with a knife I get off the bone by picking it up. I've never been offered a finger bowl in any restaurant I've eaten lamb chops in - but I don't let that stop me!

        1 Reply
        1. re: Axalady

          this is why i only eat them at home...

        2. I believe it was moh who passed on her solution in a post, once: she eats with a knife and fork at the restaurant, asks for the remainder for her 'dog', then goes home and gnaws on the bones in peace. This is pretty much my strategy, now. And sometimes I really do share them with my dog.

          1. pick them up. cut them. it's your dinner. do as you please.

            i mean acceptable to whom? and why do you need their acceptance?

            9 Replies
            1. re: thew

              i understand the sentiment, thew -- but how often do you fart and/or pick your nose in public?

              1. re: cimui

                Come on now, are those fair and equal comparisons? Is finishing a lamb chop hand -to- mouth that much more repelling than eating an ear of corn? Your eyes may be sensitive to etiquette issues, but my olfactory and auditory senses are more so.

                1. re: Veggo

                  the point i'm trying to make is that everyone is aware of and abides by etiquette in certain ways. if you observe some rules of etiquette, why?

                  i personally don't find picking up lamb chops in a restaurant with my hands repellent, but if i were among dining companions (i.e. very polite clients) who might find it off-putting, then i won't. if i'm among friends who know i'm a barbarian cave woman already and love me anyway, i might. ultimately, it comes down to a desire not to offend the sensibilities of those you are around.

                  all i'm really saying is that the op's worry about doing what's "acceptible" is a legitimate one.

                  (fyi, farting isn't considered taboo in many countries. ppl think we're nuts and unhealthy for holding it in. it's not so much a matter of the sensitivity of your nose or eyes as it is a matter of social norms.)

                  1. re: cimui

                    fun repartee until we got zapped- thanks!

                    1. re: cimui

                      My mother always thought it was shameful to see a bone on a plate w/ meat still left on it. When we were kids, she would snatch our bones and work them over - professionally.

                      FYI, she also always said that farting and burping are natural bodily functions that everyone has and you shouldn't hold it in. However, I don't really want to share other's bodily function experiences - ha! Man, reading this post one might take away that my mother was a barbarian. Not so! Just a passionate Italian & a free spirit!

                      1. re: lynnlato

                        i think i would have loved your mother, lynn. my kind of person, completely.

                        1. re: cimui

                          Thanks cimui! That's so nice. :-) She was a pretty cool chick. And she is responsible for planting the food-loving seed in me. Her recipe box is a veritable treasure trove!

                  2. re: cimui

                    as often as the situation requires. and if i choose not to it isn't because i'm worried if it is acceptable to strangers around me.

                    but back to the topic at hand.... i always clean my bones by gnawing them clean