The way you look will no doubt slay him when he first sees you. And you can stay looking killer if you skip these ten foods when on a first date.
In terms of a pricey delicacy, lobster’s a no-brainer. But anything that involves a bib is a big red flag. There’s just no dainty way to eat a lobster; it’s wet, sloppy, violent business. Plus, there’s the drawn butter you have to worry about getting on your clothes. Save this dish for a future celebration, when your relationship has matured.
2. Crunchy tacos
Crunchy tacos are always a fun, festive dish. But the mess they leave will make you say ¡Ay caramba!. “[S]hoveling a trio of tacos into your mouth in a graceful manner,” the food blog Forkly notes, “while remaining a charming dinner date is downright impossible.” And it’s likely your hands will be involved in other business — gesturing, sipping wine, perhaps even holding hands. There will be time enough for tacos later.
Asparagus will foul your first date no matter how delicately you eat it. This is because if you get invited back to your date’s place later on and you need to use the restroom, you’ll leave a sulfur smell behind. The same goes for garlic and cabbage.
4. Spaghetti and meatballs
OK, sure. We’ve all seen Lady and the Tramp. But spaghetti and meatballs do not usually get eaten so romantically. In reality, your date is likely to end up with a meatball on his clothes. “Slurping and chewing your long noodles will only add to the awkward pauses in conversation,” notes BuzzFeed. And you’re likely to get sauce all over your face.
Rack, baby back, garlic, or barbecue ribs are all ill-advised when it comes to a first date. There’s no way you can eat them without making a mess, no matter how many wet wipes your server gives you.
6. Chili dog
A foot-long hot dog stuffed with onions, cheese, and beans will definitely kill your hopes of a goodnight kiss. Plus, beans are the musical fruit: The more you eat them, the more you’re likely to “toot.”
That bacon double cheeseburger sounds like it will hit the spot, but it will also leave stains and grease on your clothes and face. So avoid large hamburgers and sandwiches of any kind if you want to save yourself the embarrassment.
Oysters are supposed to heighten arousal. But they work only if your date can get past your slurping. “We all know the bivalve’s reputation as an aphrodisiac,” Bon Appétit notes, “so this move is a little … forward.” Skip them for something that has less cultural baggage.
9. Chicken wings
Though they are a perennial favorite, avoid these guys. You’ll turn your date off if your table looks like a murder scene of saucy napkins and fingers when the check arrives. And anyway, they’re really more of an appetizer. Just stick to your salad as you await a proper main course.
10. Corn on the cob
This summer staple is tasty and nutritious enough. But some kernels will inevitably get stuck in your teeth. The last thing you want to do in front of your date is pick them out with your fingers or a toothpick.
First dates can be nerve-wracking, especially when you’re going out to dinner with someone you’ve never met before. Keep in mind that a lot is at stake on the initial date. You’re trying to make a good impression, and it’s important that you don’t order something messy or that your table manners are subpar.