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Top 4 Wine-Tasting Gaffes

Dear Helena, I am going to spend the day in Napa visiting some wineries with my boyfriend's family. They are pretty heavily into wine whe... READ MORE

What’s a Little Water Waste Between Friends

Dear Helena, I love cooking dinner for my friends, normally pretty casual. Since I do the cooking, my roommate does the dishes—which... READ MORE

Chefs Are Masochists, Culinary School Is a Scam

Dear Helena, My brother recently told the family he wants to go to culinary school. He is 42, and seems to think that it's somehow going ... READ MORE

Please Cease Mold Production

Dear Helena, Every week or two my roommate goes to the grocery store, buoyed by good intentions, and comes back with a bunch of kale, broc... READ MORE

Is the Thank-You Card Obsolete?

Dear Helena, After going to a dinner party I always send a thank-you note in the mail. I think it's elegant and classic and simple, and of... READ MORE

Hello, I’m Your Annoying Server

Dear Helena, I find it distasteful when servers introduce themselves. I’m no snob—I'm happy to converse with folks from all wa... READ MORE

When Loved Ones Don’t Eat Organic

Dear Helena, Recently I was a houseguest at the houses of two of my aunts, who were so nice as to pay for pretty much everything (I'm 17, t... READ MORE

Am I a Better Hostess If I Don’t Serve Dessert?

Dear Helena, In the past, I've found there is no more surefire way to delight your dinner guests than to bring out a homemade pie. But the... READ MORE

The Curse of the Touchy-Feely Server

Dear Helena, The other night, the waiter put his hand on my shoulder when he was placing the check on the table. This isn't the first tim... READ MORE

Gluten-Free But Not Annoying

Dear Helena, I am gluten-intolerant. Every time I eat a bowl of pasta, my stomach swells up to twice its normal size, and I feel exhausted... READ MORE