6 Ways White Tablecloths Elevate Fine Dining Experiences

A white tablecloth is usually the norm when it comes to fine dining. While not the only choice, it is a good option for most restaurants. White is available in virtually any material and fits well into most aesthetics. Since most customers expect white, it helps reinforce the idea that the restaurant is a fine dining experience.

How Can White Tablecloths Elevate Fine Dining Experiences?

Here are the six ways that white tablecloths can elevate fine dining experiences:

1. Meets Expectations

Meeting expectations obviously isn’t the only goal when trying to deliver a fine dining experience, but a white tablecloth is never out of place in a fine dining establishment. For the most part, white tablecloths are the norm. For reasons we discuss in more detail throughout the next few points, white tablecloths are well-suited to delivering a quality experience without overcomplicating things. 

White is an effective neutral color because it’s rarely distracting. People who frequent fine dining establishments have different wants and needs, but many patrons are quite discerning. It’s important that a restaurant presents almost entirely neutral or positive experiences to such patrons if it wants to keep them impressed and returning. 

2. Establishes High-Quality Materials

White is generally the default color in which linens are produced. Virtually any material that might reasonably be used for a tablecloth will be available in white including linen, cotton or satin. A business should keep in mind that it needs to research the place it’s sourcing its tablecloths from to make sure they’re reputable and will make good on their claims. From there, it’s just about finding a reputable manufacturer or linen rental service with the specific type of material you’re looking for.

3. Sets a Refined Aesthetic

White is often thought of as a refined, regal color, and it has strong associations with fine dining and cleanliness. Combined with quality furniture, good lighting and gentle music, it’s a color that can help deliver the elite experience many fine diners are looking for. This is especially true if you make sure to source high-quality tablecloths that show the extra effort an establishment has put into elevating a patron’s experience.

While a fine dining establishment can choose from a variety of aesthetics, the nature of fine dining means that projecting refinement is always going to be a positive thing. Patrons are generally looking for a “black tie” type experience when they choose fine dining. 

4. Complements Most Decor

Another benefit of white tablecloths is that they match most decor. Whatever the theme, furniture or cuisine your restaurant is delivering, white tablecloths will serve you and your patrons well. 

The neutrality of a white tablecloth can help draw the eye elsewhere, if you so desire, such as to a centerpiece or art on the walls. The goal generally isn’t to have patrons focus on the tablecloths; instead, tablecloths should complement other elements of the experience.

5. Is Easy to Source

As mentioned in our discussion about tablecloth materials, it’s easy to source white tablecloths. Many manufacturers can equip a restaurant with virtually identical white tablecloths of whatever level of quality a business wants. There are also businesses, such as Alsco, which allow you to rent high-quality tablecloths and quickly get them replaced as necessary.

This isn’t to say that other tablecloth colors aren’t widely available. Black is an alternative and has its own advantages in projecting a sense of the elite. However, pricing can vary more with colors other than white, which is often either the cheapest color available or the same price as others of the same level of quality.

6. Supports Staff Efforts

White doesn’t hide stains, so this could be viewed as a disadvantage, but a fine dining establishment should be tackling stains as soon as they occur. This high standard of cleaning also is more hygienic and better for the establishment’s aesthetic. 

As long as staff keep up on cleaning, a white tablecloth helps project the fine dining concept. When staff members keep things tidy and clean, it suggests they’ll deliver in other areas of the dining experience as well. 

Notably, even tough stains on white tablecloths can typically be removed with the right strategy. It’s mostly a matter of understanding the underlying mess causing the stain and the best way to overcome it.


A tablecloth may seem like a minor detail in the grand scheme of delivering a fine dining experience. And it’s true that a mediocre tablecloth or slightly odd color choice is unlikely to ruin an otherwise excellent meal. But at the same time, fine dining is about going above and beyond. A quality tablecloth choice has the potential to elevate a meal at little (if any) additional cost to a business compared to the alternative.

At Alsco, we provide numerous clients in the fine dining business with all their linen needs. Read about our linen rental services to learn how you can equip your business with high-quality linens without needing to worry about maintenance. We can ensure your restaurant always has clean, fresh tablecloths available. We handle the entire process, so you can focus on other aspects of running your fine dining establishment.

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