The art of fine dining

STRATFORD- The table was covered in a pink cloth covering, linen napkins and bouquets of pink and red flowers. The decor set the mood for a fine dining experience for students at Stratford School.

Superintendent Sarah Binder said that all this week, small groups of students had the opportunity to dine with members of the community in a special dining area.

Binder said the meals were meant introduce the students to the art of casual conversation, good table manners and embracing the social graces.

She said the meals give the students a chance to try different foods and learn ways to find good things to say about the meal, even if they may not like what has been served.

“Some of the foods are new to everyone this year, even the fifth and sixth graders,” she said. “How do you say ‘I don’t like that?’

The menu featured a pork cutlet, a fresh salad, green beans, potatoes and sorbet for dessert.

Binder had the students come up with some things to say if they didn’t like the foods featured on the menu.

“We came up with things like, ‘That’s easy to cut,’ or “What a large portion,'” she said.

Binder said the meal also gave the students a chance to learn to interact with their fellow students and the community guests.

“That’s the art of social graces,” she said. “It helps them learn to present themselves well.”