The art of setting a table which is the cornerstone of family meals is essential for aged care dining rooms. This is important as it creates a home-like environment and an inviting aged care dining room. The dining room table is a symbol of tradition and throughout the years dining room table settings has changed with the style of catering reflective of the time.
An inviting dining room setting support the meal service. It shows not only pride but also what type of meal will be served. The setting does change over the day to accommodate the types of menus being served. For example, breakfast would have a knife, spoon, plate, and bowl, whereas evening meal may have a knife and fork and a soup spoon.
Table setting also can carry themes, Christmas trees during Christmas and other decorations such as flowers or novel centrepieces. Table centrepieces I have observed include the daily menu, quiz, poems, or other activities in which the residents can read and discuss. In aged care sometimes it is impractical to use a tablecloth. But the purchase of quality wood tables and the use of placemats, contrasting colours can create an inviting dining room. One way to personalise your dining room for each resident if using placemats is to use ask the resident to choose their own as shown in the picture.
How tables are set is one important aspect of a good meal experience and makes the dining room inviting.
The Foodservice Centre has loads of helpful dining room resources. To keep up to date with Nutrition & Catering Global Hub (NAC GH) make sure you are subscribed to our newsletter.