Dos & Don’ts for a great table conversation (video & podcast)

Tonight Umbert is invited to an amazing dinner at Ducasse sur Seine.

Other guests will be some friends but also famous people from the arts and business Parisian scene.

What are the Dos & Don’ts for a great table conversation ?

Umbert gives you the basics so you won’t have a bad experience at your next party. The more you practice, the better you will be.

Benefits of this coaching :

  • Best methodology to become irresistible
  • Innovative technique to unleash your charisma
  • Learn the new etiquette & manners
  • A better lifestyle

« During a conversation, be sure to not have the last word, the first. », Sacha Guitry, French actor

“Dans la conversation, gardez-vous bien d’avoir le dernier mot, le premier.”, Sacha Guitry, acteur Français

In this article :

1) General rules

2) Do not monopolize the conversation

3) Do not be “hypochondriac”

4)Topics to avoid

5) The problem of the « silent” person

6) When can you talk & what can you say

1) General rules

When speaking, just bend your head in the direction of the other person, and not your shoulders, to not turn your back to the other neighbor.

Share your conversation equally between your neighbors on the right and on the left.

Men, besides serving wine, must also speak to their female neighbors.

Try to find out what topics interest them and ask questions. Great speakers open their mind and the conversation. They open the door.

If your neighbors do not speak to you, do not show your boredom (think of your weekend!). If the situation becomes troublesome, ask them with a smile.

Do not argue with a guest at the other end of the table.

Never interrupt, except if the other is rudeness or vulgar. On the opposite, always listen a lot, you will learn something for sure, and the other will feel listened.

Do not say what has to be done or not done. You can argue, but always consider the other point of view.

Do not gossip or criticize on anyone.

Congratulate the hostess for her amazing party.

Warning: if you make a mistake, if the other guests feel offended, this could ruin the party.

2) Do not monopolize the conversation

Whoever speaks only of his work, in addition with technical terms, can quickly become boring. Try to tell a funny anecdote instead.

The sports enthusiast: do not comment on your 18 holes of golf in front of non players.

If this happens, the host must react at the right time, by skillfully hooking up a more general topic : eg Rugby ⇒ travel.

The “Me, I”: The one who interrupts all the time by “me-I”. The host must react and after a while return to the one that was cut “Charles do not finish, tell us Charles stp”.

3) Do not be “hypochondriac”

This is hell for the one who has asked for your news, and for those who are hearing the details of your treatments and operations.

The host must quickly reorient it. Example: “François, you look great, how was your last vacation?”

4) Topics to avoid




The recipe: Shut up or moderate your opinions.

Disagreements can appear. Always start to calm down, listen to the other, agree with him in a way, and tell your argument with moderation.

5) The problem of the « silent” person

If you do not like talking or if you feel strange in this dinner:

Make a very big effort to find a general subject or compliment the hostess.

If necessary, prepare some discussion topics in advance.

6) When can you talk & what can you say

Yes, knowing how to express yourself is an art.

During a dinner, do not monopolize the conversation. It must be an exchange.

You must never interupt.

If you are shy, and someone asks you some questions or invites you to express yourself: go ahead and answer.

If you have to make a speech:

  • Prepare your speech. You’ll feel more relaxed and will avoid any drama. Few good improvisers! 
  • Tell the person organizing the reception. 
  • The speech must be: personal, original, simple, clear and brief.
  • Start with « Ladies & Gentlemen. » If a personality is in the room: Start with its title.
  • Do not stay away from the subject.
  • Stay positive even if it’s about a disaster.
  • Do not talk about yourself.

Umbert remembers you the Dos & Don’ts for a great table conversation.

Tonight he will have once again an amazing time in Paris, especially because the dinner will on a boat, watching all the sparkling illuminations of Paris.

What you must remember : If all the guests feel and stay confortable, the party will be a success. A drama would ruin everything. Stay on general topics, and always give your best original and positive comments.

How to become irresistible ? Download now the free eBook, chapter Behave (only available this month).

Bon voyage !

Umbert De Paris

How to welcome your guests to your dinner party at home ? (video & podcast)

To listen to the podcast click here :



Umbert is planning his holiday invitations at home.

He will be so happy to welcome his friends and family in his sumptuous apartment in Paris.

He wants to help you remember some simple rules on How to welcome your guests to your dinner party at home.


Benefits of this coaching :

  • Best methodology to become irresistible
  • Innovative technique to unleash your charisma
  • Learn the new etiquette & manners
  • A better lifestyle


“We do not arrive at people home empty-handed”, French proverb

“ On n’arrive pas chez les gens qui nous invitent les mains vides”, proverbe Français 


In this article :

1) Welcoming guests

2) The présentations

3) The hand kissing (optional)


1) Welcoming guests

Forget about the fatigue, nervousness, worries …

The host must imperatively be ready to welcome his guests. Umbert likes to dress, perfume, to make sure that his style is impeccable.

Everyone is greeted with a kind word that express the joy of receiving.

If the guests have sent flowers or chocolates before, thank them warmly, but discreetly to not bother those who would not have brought anything.

If there are few guests, open the package in front of them. If it is chocolates or candies, offer them at the end of the dinner.

If there are many guests, open them afterwards, and call or write the next day to thank.

It is necessary to provide vases with the water for the flowers offered. Arrange the flowers in it and highlight the bouquet.

If someone bring wine that does not fit the menu, say that you keep it to share it with them at the next dinner.

If one bring fresh champagne, serve it as an aperitif or dessert.

Toasting can bring fun and make your party special. The host proposes it to celebrate this night, to welcome everyone or a special guest. The host should stand up, raise his glass, make a short speech and have fun ! Don’t forget to watch everyone, then look at the special guest, if there is one, who will say a polite thank you.

When the aperitif is finished (1 hour maximum) the host gets up and places the guests.

If a guest is very late, do not wait for him to eat.


2) The présentations

The presentations are the first act of interaction with the other guests.

The first impression being the one that counts the most, Umbert reminds you of the basic rules of the New Etiquette and manners.

Immediately giving the best self-image is a difficult art, so Umbert offers you those general advices that are easy to follow anywhere :

  1. First you have to stand-up to meet the guests.
  2. Keep your arms loosely at your side, ready to shake hands.
  3. Smile to give the image of a person at ease, happy to know those that are presented to you.
  4. Do maintain eye contact to prove your sincerity and confidence, do not keep your sunglasses if you are outside.
  5. Speak clearly to avoid having the caller repeat, especially your name, so never chew gum, or eat while talking.

If you are shy or uncomfortable, have someone introduce you.

If you meet a celebrity, do not stare at her, and take a picture only with her permission, especially if she has a bodyguard !!

The presentations rules :

  • Three criteria must be respected : the age, the sex and the social status.
  • The youngest person is presented to the oldest, the man to the woman, an employee to his employer, the least “graded” to the most “graded”.
  • The persons to reach out first are : the women, the hosts, older people and people of high social standing.

The presentation process :

  1. State your name first, then your second name: “Good evening, Umbert De Paris ». Never say : the name first, or Mr Umbert De Paris, or I am Umbert De Paris. Only use Mr or Mrs when you make an appointment, for example, at the hairdresser. You can say « Mr », « Sir », « Mrs » or « Madam » only for an older person.
  2. How should the handshake be ? Be careful, it reveals your personality ! Too strong : proof of self-confidence, but also of authoritarianism. Not strong enough : proof of indifference, of boredom. Too long : loving intention or strong affection. Strong enough, not too long : this is the proper way to do it. If you wear gloves, remove them, but a woman can keep them in the street. The man must propose to the woman to keep them. If you enter a room where there are many people : it is not necessary to shake hands, you must shake the host hand, and smile to all saying a general hello.
  3. Once the interlocutor knows your name, you can add “How are you? ». Never starts with “How are you?” which is reserved for intimates.  You can say “I am delighted to meet you” or” I am delighted to know you “or” I am very happy to meet you “. Never say “delighted” or “I am happy” or “very happy.”. If you are introduced to a young boy or girl : “Hello” can be followed by the first name. This formula is warmer.
  4. If someone forget to introduce you, do not hesitate to introduce yourself by saying “Good evening, I think we have forgotten to introduce ourselves, my name is (First name and last name) ».

Exemple :

Diane introduces Umbert to her friends.

They first meet Emma in conversation with Charles. Diane says “Umbert, ​​Iet me introduce you to Emma ».

Then they meet Charles :  « Charles, this is Umbert ».

Umbert « How are you ? », shaking hands.

Kiss or no kiss :

  • If you want to be introduced to a woman : bow a little and introduce yourself and wait for the woman to give her hand.
  • Do not kiss the people you meet for the first time.
  • Never force someone to kiss you.
  • You can kiss if the person who is introduced to you bends over to kiss you.
  • You can kiss a very young child.
  • If a person blush while kissing him, act as if you have not noticed anything.

Umbert hopes that you’ve learned some tips to know How to introduce yourself according to the New Etiquette.

Depends on the country, greetings rituals may change, especially in Asia. Follow Umbert on his next adventures and weekends to learn about international New Etiquette advices.


3) The hand kissing (optional)

You can read this article about the hand-kissing :


How to welcome your guests to your dinner party at home ? Welcoming guests and the aperitif are an exiting moment for Umbert.

He loves to check if the beginning of the party is full of joy and great talking, which is a sign that the night will be a complete success.

What you must remember : always smile and great guest warmly, to make them confortable. This will assure a great party. Do the presentations properly no no ones feel disrespected. Keep the hand-kissing for a very formal ceremony.

How to become irresistible ? Download now the free eBook, chapter Behave (only available this month).

Bon voyage !

Umbert De Paris

7 Advices to choose the dishes and wine for your dinner party at home (video & podcast)

To listen to the podcast click here :



After Thanksgiving, Umbert has now enough time to think about the holidays season.

He’s gonna invite his best friends and family for a dinner at home.

Umbert loves the holiday season. This is, with summer, the best time of the year. It is very relaxing, full of emotions and love.

He gives you 7 advices to choose the dishes and wine for your dinner party at home.


Benefits of this coaching :

  • Best methodology to become irresistible
  • Innovative technique to unleash your charisma
  • Learn the new etiquette & manners
  • A better lifestyle


« Real cooking is a form of art, a gift to share », Oprah Winfrey, American producer

“La vraie cuisine est une forme d’art, un cadeau à partager », Oprah Winfrey, productrice Américaine


In this article :

1) The aperitif

2) The entrance

3) The main course

4) The cheese / salad

5) The bread

6) Dessert

7) Wines


Think about  your meal several days in advance to be relaxed.

Privilege a menu and seasonal, local and organic products.

Remember to consider the nationality and religion of the guests. You cannot impose foods proscribed by religion.

1) The aperitif

The aperitif is usually taken outside the table, in the living room or own the garden terrasse.

It’s a good idea to make a homemade cocktail, but also to offer a range of classic alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.

2) The entrance

The entrance must be light. It can be presented on plates when sitting at the table to avoid clutter.

3) The main course

The main course, fish or meat, must be light. Avoid some dishes that are too heavy or have a very particular taste.

4) The cheese / salad

Here is the ideal cheese plate:

  • Hard dough (Gruyère, Comté, Beaufort).
  • Soft dough (Camembert, Brie, Munster).
  • Goat cheese.
  • A marbled paste (Blue, Roquefort, to serve with a little butter).

The cheese must be served at home temperature.

If you serve salad and cheese at the same time, plan a large plate.

5) The bread

Cut it into large chunks and slanted.

Present two baskets on the table with a matching towel at the bottom.

6) The dessert

It is inversely proportional to the heaviness of the meal.

7) The wines

Here we give only a few basic tips.

Every wine has its type of glass.

During a meal consisting of several dishes, two kinds of wine are in principle offered from the lightest to the strongest.


  • White wines before the reds.
  • Dry wines before mellowness.
  • The youngest before the older ones.

The more meat is raised, the more powerful the wine. The finer it is, the lighter it is.

Decantation: it is linked to the grape, the vintage, the region and the wine grower.

If you are not a connoisseur, ask the wine merchant.

Champagne :

  • Keep it cool 48 hours before opening.
  • The younger it is, the more it must be drunk cold, in a 2/3 flute.
  • Avoid blowing the cap.
  • Connoisseurs turn the bottle and not the cap until the carbon dioxide escapes whistling.

With those easy 7 advices to choose the dishes and wine for your dinner party at home, Umbert can handle any invitation at home.

He loves having his friends and family at home.

In December in Paris, the City Of Lights, where the holiday season is magic !

What you should remember : just follow those 7 advices, and take it easy. The simplest the better. Always match the food with the wines, and don’t forget to create your home cocktail to impress your guest, it will be fun !

How to become irresistible ? Download now the free eBook, chapter Behave (only available this month).

Bon voyage !

Umbert De Paris

How to easily place your guests for your Thanksgiving party (Video & Podcast)

To listen to the podcast click here :



Umbert enjoys receiving his friends in Paris, especially for the long weekend of Thanksgiving.

It is a privileged moment for him to relax with his family and friends.

The coming winter, the fireplace, the plaid on the sofa, a very cozy universe conducive to family and friendly relations.

Umbert explains you How to easily place your guests for your Thanksgiving party.


  • Benefits of this coaching :
  • Best methodology to become irresistible
  • Innovative technique to unleash your charisma
  • Learn the new etiquette & manners
  • A better lifestyle


“The family is a big table and everyone around”, Laetitia Casta, French actress


In this article :

1) Table setting at home

2) Table setting for business


1) Table setting at home

The simplest  to not be embarrassed at the last moment, is to provide cardboards with the names, placed in front of the water glass (or pebbles, shells, ribbons ….)

  • The hostess and her husband:

In France, if the table is of 6, 10, 14 or 18 guests, the hostess and her husband are placed at each end of the table, face to face. If the table is of 8, 12, 16 guests, the hostess shifts one place to respect the alternation Male / Female.

In England and the USA: the householders are at each end of the table.

  • The guest of honor:

For a woman: to the right of the master of the house.

For a man: to the right of the hostess.

  • Couples of equal social importance (couple X and Y):

If couples are of equal importance: places of honor go to those who are invited for the first time, or to the oldest people, or the one whose function is the most important.

Couples are always separated except those who have been married for less than a year.

– Mr. X will be to the right of the hostess.

– Mr. Y will be on the left.

– Madame Y will be on the right of the master of the house.

– Ms. X will be on the left.

  • Particularities:

If there is a single person, the alternation will not be able to play. Do not point it out.

Likewise if you are 13 at the table.

A religious personality always has the place to the right of the hostess.

If you are alone, do not put a single person in front of you … Avoid ambiguity.


2) Table setting for business

The most important guest sits to the right of the host, the second to the left.

If there are 2 people who invite, they sit at each end of the table, with the 3rd most important to his right.


How to easily place your guests for your Thanksgiving party? Respect these simple tips.

The table plan is made to encourage meetings and talkings between guests.

What to remember: position people in order of importance to those who invite. Place a cardboard in front of each glass to avoid any confusion at the last moment.

How to become irresistible ? Download now the free eBook, chapter Behave (only available this month).

Bon voyage !

Umbert De Paris