THANKS GIVING DINNER: A TITANIC FIRST-CLASS DINING EXPERIENCE
The wonder and opulence for which Titanic was known extended far past her exterior and modern amenities and on to the delicious food that was served. With over 6,000 meals prepared daily for the 2,228 passengers and crew members on board, the Ship’s meals were more delectable than ever before. Everything from menu selection, to the table settings to the what guests wore were all eloquently thought of prior to enjoying those luxurious dinners. In order to replicate such elegance we’ve put together all you’ll need for a successful first-class dining experience.
In preparation for such an extravagant meal, you’ll of course need to select a date and send out formal invitations, complete with information on how to dress. These should reflect the theme and luxuriousness of the dinner that will be served, so having a good idea of the menu will make selecting the right invitation easier. This will also help define what centerpieces to choose. These were often elaborate displays of flowers, fruits and greenery set in crystal vases or dishes. In addition, you will need to select the china, dinnerware and linens for the table setting, and silver platters for serving each course. Once you’ve established all of the necessary items, you can begin elaborating on your menu.
The dining table should be covered in linens, followed by centerpieces, small dishes of nuts, olives or sweets, and then the place settings – for a personalized touch, print place cards for each of your guests. Each place setting will need a side plate, large fork, dessert fork, napkin, cheese knife, dessert spoon, dinner knife, soup spoon, and three glasses for champagne/sparkling wine, white wine and red wine.
True Edwardian-era dinners were served in courses, and could include as many as eleven different meals. The full eleven options are listed below, but we’ve provided a modified version to cut down on the bulk of it. In addition, these dinners began with a reception or cocktail hour where guests sipped on white wine or champagne as they mingled, proceeded through the delicious courses and concluded with after dinner coffee and cigars. Selecting each menu item can often be tedious, because it involves ensuring that everything from appetizers to entrees, to beverages and desserts all complement one another.
As previously mentioned your guests will be greeted with cocktails and time for mingling upon arrival in their formal attire. They would then be escorted into the dining room and be seated for their first course, hors d’oeuvres. The second course would be soup, followed by fish, then entrees, with the fifth course being removes, a sixth being punch or sorbet, the seventh being a roast, followed by salad, then a cold dish, with the tenth being sweets and the final being desert. Yes, a lot of food so be sure your guests know to come hungry, and don’t forget that even after all that food guests will still be served coffee after dinner.
The extravagancies of the Edwardian-era meals make us wonder how anyone stayed thin during that era. Of course, most women and others with smaller appetites would often choose smaller portions or skip courses. Regardless of how much you serve, as long as the elegance is present the legacy of Titanic will be too.
“We dined the last night in the Ritz restaurant. It was the last word in luxury. The tables were gay with pink roses and white daisies, the women in their beautiful shimmering gowns of satin and silk, the men immaculate and well-groomed, the stringed orchestra playing music from Puccini and Tchaikowsky. The food was superb: caviar, lobster, quail from Egypt, plover’s eggs, and hothouse grapes and fresh peaches. The night was cold and clear, the sea like glass.”
– First-class passenger, Mrs. Walter Douglas