ETIQUETTE SAMPLER MADE By Derrick L. Christian II Even before the bill comes, it can be a high price to pay when making costly mistakes at the dinner table. Whether a high stakes business meeting or a Taco Tuesday gathering with friends, pull up a chair and feast on these tips to taste sweet success at any table you’re invited to sit at. APPETIZERS: THINGS TO DO BEFORE THE MEAL. • Know Your Company: If you’re eating with someone new or important (Client, Parents of your significant other, etc.) knowing interesting facts about their favorite topics makes for great dinner conversation and helps you look like a pro. • Sample The Menu Online: Take a look at the menu on the restaurant website to get an idea of what you’d like. See food photos, user conversations on the best dishes and more on apps like Yelp. This helps you plan calories (if you’re counting), avoid foods you’re allergic to and impress dinner company with cool restaurant facts and your ability to guide them along the menu. • Call Ahead: Giving the restaurant a call to ask if there is free, validated or valet parking around the location helps plan a more efficient trip. If you’re meeting a larger group there, asking if they split the check for larger parties helps you know if you need to bring cash. No need to be surprised later.