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A Diamond Guide to Gourmet Utensils

gourmet utensils on a table at Ocean House in Westerly, Rhode Island

From left to right: appetizer fork and knife, entree fork and knife, steak knife, fish fork and knife, soup spoon, dessert spoon, salt spoon and butter knife.

(Photo: Cassandra Raposo)

If you’re heading out to eat at a high-end restaurant for the first time, be prepared to find some unfamiliar utensils on your table. The standard fork, knife and spoon just won’t cut it (pun intended) during multi-course meals.

Here are some utensils you may find while dining at Coast, the AAA Four Diamond Rated restaurant at Ocean House in Westerly, R.I.

Appetizer fork and knife. Made for a small appetizer or fruit plate, the appetizer fork and knife are just like the entree fork and knife, but smaller in size.

Steak knife. You may see two knives on your table – both the same size, but one sharper and with a finer point. The sharper knife is made for tougher meats, like lamb and steak.

Fish fork. These are smaller than entree forks and have three wide tines instead of four thinner ones.

Fish knife. This utensil is for serving fish. It has a dull edge and a wide, fin-shaped blade with a notch on one side, used to remove the fish skeleton from the body.

Soup spoon. Wider and more circular in shape than a regular tablespoon, soup spoons are made for scooping up more broth (versus an oval spoon that would carry meat and vegetables).

Dessert spoon. This long, thin spoon is similar to a tablespoon but made for eating puddings and other sweet dishes.

Salt spoon. Hailing from a time before salt and pepper shakers, diminutive salt spoons are perfect for transferring salt from a bowl to your plate.

Butter knife. With a wide blade, rounded point and notch on one side, a butter knife is made for spreading butter onto bread without tearing it apart.

Which fancy utensil is your favorite? What other fancy, funny-looking or practical utensils are there? Tell us in the comments below!

Click here to learn more about AAA Diamond Ratings and find a Diamond Rated hotel or restaurant near you.

We shadowed a AAA inspector to understand what it takes to be AAA Diamond Rated. Take a look behind the scenes.

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