finger bowl

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small bowl for rinsing the fingers at table

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When I asked for a finger bowl to de-clag my digits from our starters, the waitress looked confused.
There is a delightful reference in The Taming of the Shrew to the habit of providing finger bowls at banquets "Let one attend him with a silver basin, Full of rose-water and bestrew'd with flowers".
Spoon into large soup bowls and don't forget the spare empty bowls for the shells, as well as the finger bowls of warm water to wash your hands.
"I was told about hotel pranks (unrepeatable) and that some players drank from finger bowls.
To enter Buckley's world was to enter the world of yachts, limousines, finger bowls at dinner, celebrities such as David Niven and tales of skiing at Gstaad.
Orange flower water is particularly effective for neutralising general household smells and with this you can also wow your dinner guests by using the water in finger bowls for in-between courses.
There were sweet chilli and peanut dipping sauces with finger bowls thoughtfully provided on the tables.
If you're unsure about silverware, finger bowls, or other accoutrements of a formal table, watch the captain or the lady to his right, who is the de facto hostess and probably knows what to do or she wouldn't be sitting there.
Have warm finger bowls and linen napkins at the ready.
"You may need to know about how to handle finger bowls, all right!
It's almost impossible not to use your hands when consuming pigs' feet, so provide damp towels or finger bowls. Tuscan Pigs' Feet Stew
Other people think these bowls were dual purpose - rinsers and coolers - while still others maintain stoutly that both ideas are nonsense, that these objects were simply finger bowls.
Lindsey points out: "This is a hands-on main course so supply plenty of paper napkins and finger bowls with rose petals or slices of lemon."
Inside they found six bottles of champagne, three bottles of sherry, one of port, one of shrub, two of cherry brandy, one of orange brandy, one of apricot brandy, two china cups and sauces, two champagne glasses, two finger bowls, one water bottle, one medicine glass, two linen shirts, two pairs of knitted drawers, two collars and two pairs of black socks.