The surprising way the Queen likes to dine in the privacy of her home


When she's not entertaining friends and family or hosting a lavish state banquet, the Queen's preferred way of dining is still just as refined as you'd expect. According to Dinner at Buckingham Palace, a book based on the diaries and personal recollections of royal servant Charles Oliver, Her Majesty likes to dine in a very atmospheric way.

An extract reveals: "The Queen likes to dine by candlelight, with the wall lights switched off and the light from the chandelier overhead subdued. She also likes candles for bigger dinner parties (of around 20 guests) given in the 1844 Room of the Caernarvon Suite. This beautiful room particularly lends itself to candlelight. Here the gilded embossing on the walls and ceiling catches the trembling light and glows magically. The rich hangings of the room look all the more magnificent in soft light."

The Queen likes to dine by candlelight

The book, which was compiled and edited by Paul Fishman and Fiorella Busoni, also reveals how the Queen and her husband Prince Philip both dislike oysters. Another extract reads: "Inevitably there are one or two things the Queen and her husband do not like, and the hosts are duly warned in advance.

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"The palace instruction states only: 'Neither the Queen nor the Duke of Edinburgh like oysters. The Queen often drinks a glass of red or white wine with her meals as well as orange juice. His Royal Highness prefers gin and tonic or lager to champagne before meals or during the day.'"

She often drinks a glass of red or white wine with her meals as well as orange juice

Darren McGrady, former chef to the Queen, has also previously spoken to HELLO! about the royal family's likes and dislikes. Darren revealed that the 92-year-old monarch is not really a foodie at heart, whereas her husband Philip is more of an adventurous eater.

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"The Queen never was a foodie," he revealed. "She always ate to live rather than live to eat. Prince Philip was the foodie. He'd want to try any new dishes all the time and got excited about new ingredients whereas the Queen, if we had a new recipe, she'd have to look at the whole recipe before saying, 'Yes ok let's try it.' But for the most part she stuck to the same dishes week in week out."

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