Menu cards have an interesting history as to thier origin. In 1541, the Duke Henry of Brunswick threw a banquet. He had a royal sheet of paper beside him, which he was seen to be referring every now and then. One of the guests asked him about it. The Duke explained that it was a list of food items they were having and he used the list to preserve his appetite for the dishes he liked. The idea stuck and has become quite popular from then on.