Setting the coffee table: where is actually the cake fork?

The noon lies a few hours back, there also already the coffee time approaches. One of the most popular snacks, but more for socializing and relaxing than for fighting hunger.

The name Coffee time is just one of many that the people of Europe have found for a snack:

  • Brotzeit (you probably already knew it)
  • snack (yes, not very exciting)
  • Jause (now it’s getting interesting, or?)
  • Znuni (as the Swiss say)
  • Marend (common term in Tyrol)
  • Vesper (no, not the scooter, that’s the Vespa)

So the term "coffee time" is one of the more precise ones. For here at least the dominant beverage is specified; the coffee.

A piece of cake or pie goes perfectly with that, doesn’t it?? Good that we agree on this.

What we can argue about is, when the coffee time on the clock face is to be arranged. In my eyes 16:00 o’clock is a good time for it. But who, as a working person, has the leisure to drop everything at four o’clock in the morning to sip a cup of coffee?? At this time of the day, it’s much more fun to dig through files, curse the rush hour traffic or the public transport system.

I fully agree, if you put your very personal coffee time in the lunch break, or let it take place late in the evening.

By the way, the teatime in England runs from 16:00 to 17:00 o’clock.

Now that we know almost exactly by when the coffee table should be set, let’s take a look at how it’s done in the first place:

  • Where to put the plate?
  • Where to put the cup?
  • Where to put the coffee spoon?
  • Where is the cake fork?
  • Damn. A guest is left-handed!?

Calm blood; we sort this apart quite comfortably.

How to set the coffee table

I’m proud of you for even looking at a text about setting a coffee table. This is already an exceptionally specific theme. This attention to detail unites us!

The tablecloth

Basically tablecloths are not necessary. Whether the social constraint can persuade you to put one on after all is up to your discretion.

If you decide to do this because, for example, a festive occasion recommends it, then note the following points:

  • Before anything lands on the table, clean it of dust and crumbs
  • Make sure the table does not wobble. Countermeasures are not so easy to implement when the table is set.
  • Tablecloths have folds.

The latter can become a problem: The wrinkles in a tablecloth are almost impossible to prevent. After all, they only fit folded in the cupboard. These folds are either inclined towards the table (negligible) or they form a wave pointing towards the sky.

Pull the tablecloth as smooth as you can and make sure to fix the tightening with the first things you put on it (plate, saucer and the like).

If you are particularly fond of the table, or if circumstances dictate that as little noise as possible should be made when coffee cups are put down, then choose a suitable base. A Molton cloth* is a good choice here. It gives more protection to the table surface and muffles noises.

Once the tablecloth is placed, we move on to the plates:

Plates and cups

The plate is centered in front of the guest. The edge of the plate is a good centimeter from the edge of the table.

Covering plates and saucers

The saucer of the coffee cup is on the top right of the plate. Assuming the plate had a clock face, the coffee cup and saucer would be at half past two – round 5-8 centimeters from the edge of the plate.

The handle of the cup points to the right, so that the guest can immediately grab the cup by the handle.

Set cutlery at the coffee table

Almost done! Now it’s just a matter of positioning the cutlery correctly.

Place of the cake fork on the coffee table

Coffee spoon cover

The coffee spoon is placed on the saucer.

It lies above the cup. The style of the spoon points to the right and slightly downwards. The spoon’s spoon is pointing upwards, so the spoon lying on its side could hold a few drops of water.

Where is the cake fork?

The cake fork is above the plate.

The fork is also parallel to the edge of the table. Its tines point upwards and lie on the left. The style points to the right. In this way, the guest can reach the handle directly with his right hand.

Additional knives& Forks

If other dishes are planned for coffee time besides cake and pie, then a table fork and table knife may be needed.

Set knife and fork on coffee table

The fork is to the left of the plate, with the tines pointing upwards. The knife is on the right side of the plate with the blade upwards and the sharp edge facing the plate.

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