When they say dine like a king – do they mean literally?  Do they mean eat from a silver plate, surrounded by ancient tapestries, and piles of exotic fruits while liveried footmen serve endless rich courses?

Of course, far too many of us are dining like kings and have waistlines that answer to it.  But how about dining like a king in terms of the setting.  Maybe I’d enjoy my salad more if I ate it in sumptuous surroundings.

A generation or two ago, families had ‘best’ china, or “Sunday” dinner services.  These were too precious to be used every day and were saved for special occasions or for guests that were to be impressed.

We don’t have such occasions any more.  Although many of us still have ‘best’ things that we don’t use. 

I find that special occasions usually have so much going for them anyway, that you don’t need fancy crockery.  But a stressful and dull Tuesday evening can be livened up no end, with candelabra, silver cutlery and a table laid for a feast.  Even if you’re only having beans on toast.  It makes it FUN!

The table above is only dressed with a sheet – but the room is gorgeous.  Why not try a centrepiece of fruit?  It uses things you already have, so you don’t need to buy flowers.  And you can eat it afterwards.

If you’re eating in a room like this, your wine is probably stored in a cellar much like that below:

If not – a bit of dust will make your wine feel ancient.

The secret to great table decor is height – piles of marzipan (or real) fruit and candles need to start well above table level in little dishes on elegant stems.  It makes it all look so much more bacchanalian!

How are you dining tonight?