The literal meaning of the French phrase is by the card, although its used in both languages to mean according to the menu. The opposite of a la carte is a table dhôte, or meal served at a fixed price.
What is the meaning a la carte?
: according to a menu or list that prices items separately.
What is the example of a la carte?
The definition of a la carte is a list of items on a menu which are priced separately. A baked potato on a menu is an example of an a la carte item.
Are all restaurants a la carte?
All sorts of restaurants have a la carte menus, from fast-casual spots to epic, white tablecloth fine dining establishments. This section is mostly concerned with the latter. The a la carte table setting definition is simply how each guests place setting is set when an a la carte menu is being served.