The Queen and Prince Philip have been married for over seven decades so it's perhaps no surprise they share the same taste in food. The royals have strict rules about dinner table etiquette - and oysters are off the menu. It was revealed in Dinner at Buckingham Palace, based on the diaries and personal recollections of royal servant Charles Oliver, that the seafood delicacy should never be served to the couple.
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"Inevitably there are one or two things the Queen and her husband do not like, and the hosts are duly warned in advance," an extract reads. "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."
Neither the Queen nor the Duke of Edinburgh like oysters
The book, compiled and edited by Paul Fishman and Fiorella Busoni, also reveals that the Queen's hosts are normally issued with written instructions from the palace before their royal visitors arrive. With regards to seating at public lunches, "the host should have the Queen to his right and the Prince to his left" and "the next most important male guest must be seated to the right of the Queen". The extract also notes: "For more informal meals the palace advice is: 'The Queen and Prince Philip like to sit opposite each other across the table.'"
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Darren McGrady, former chef to the Queen, has 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. "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."
"She is absolutely a chocoholic," her former chef Darren McGrady has revealed
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Darren added: "She is absolutely a chocoholic. Anything we put on the menu that had chocolate on, she would choose, especially chocolate perfection pie. For a main course she loved game, things like Gaelic steak, fillet steak with a mushroom whisky sauce, especially if we did it with venison. For a first course she loved the Gleneagles pâté, which is smoked salmon, trout and mackerel. She loved using ingredients off the estate and so if we had salmon from Balmoral from the River Dee, she'd have that, it was one of her favourites."
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