Try these tips to maintain your poise.
If the fish is served whole, remove the head behind the gills, Etiquette Scholar recommends.
To fillet and debone the body, hold the trout with a fork and slit from the head to the tail with a knife, then open the fish and lay it flat on the plate.
To remove the skeleton from the body, place the tip of the knife under the backbone, lift with the fork, and place it on the side of the plate.”
Debrett’s says never to flip the fish over to reach the underside flesh — lift the bone up and gently ease the flesh out from beneath.
If you find any small bones, remove them from your mouth and place them on the side of your plate.
Hold the lobster with one hand, twist off the claws and place them on the side of your plate, according to Etiquette Scholar.
Slowly crack the claws and use a fork or lobster pick to remove the meat. Pull out the tail meat and cut it.
Use the pick or fork to spear lobster pieces and dip them into butter if provided. A large bowl or platter should be provided for the empty shells. Finger bowls may be provided with the meal is over.”
Typically, lobsters will arrive at your table cut in half. Debrett’s says it’s okay to just use your fork while steadying the lobster with your hand.
The big claws usually come cracked but if not, you will need to use the special lobster crackers.
Once you’ve cracked the claws, pull out the meat with a fork. If you want to get meat out of the smaller attachments, use a lobster pick.”
Debrett’s suggests using an empty mussel as a pincer to extract other mussels. Forks are fine too. You can mop up the sauce with bread or a spoon.