If you’ve ever visited an upscale restaurant or taken dinner in the first-class section of the Titanic, you’ll have noticed that diners are presented with more than one type of spoon. If you look to the far right of your impressive selection of spoons, you’ll find the one meant to be used for consuming soup. You can recognize it easily enough by its wide, round bowl.

You might assume that having separate spoons is merely an affectation meant to provide an air of luxury, but using a soup spoon can actually improve your culinary experience.

Holds More Soup

The most obvious reason to use a soup spoon is seen in the wide, round bowl. With a bowl deeper than even that of a dessert spoon, the soup spoon is ideal for holding more liquid. That obviously makes it easier to eat your soup, but it also means being able to take several slow sips to really experience the myriad of flavours and textures.

Faster Cooling

The bowl of a soup spoon might be deep, but it is also very wide. As such, the soup held in the spoon will have a large area exposed to the air. Why is that beneficial? Because it helps cool the soup down on its way from the bowl to your mouth. Soup should be served hot enough to stay palatable as you eat it, and the spoon should be wide enough to keep each spoonful cool enough to eat. It’s a tricky balance that you’ll only achieve when you use the right cutlery.

Less Mess

Soup has the potential to be quite messy, but a soup spoon helps prevent any accidental drips and splashes. The rim of the bowl is raised enough to make spills less easy to make, and the depth of the bowl helps keep everything where it should be.

No Cross-Contamination 

Finally, soup spoons are very important for preventing cross-contamination. If you use the same spoon throughout each course, you’re going to keep transferring the taste of each dish to the next. The effect won’t be strong enough to make subsequent dishes unpalatable, but their flavours won’t be experienced as fully as they should be.