Eating out

Useful Vocabulary

waiter(s) waitress(es) chef(s)
wine glass(es)
glass(es)   bottle(s)
tip(s) / gratuity(gratuities)
bill(s) credit card(s) tip(s)
See also eating at home and food vocabulary.

Build Up

Places to Eat Out
Snack Bar
Fast Food Restaurant
Hotel Restaurant
Parts of a Menu

Starters/Appetizers/Entrees/Hors D'oeuvres
Main Courses (Meat/Fish/Vegetarian)

Beverages (Coffee etc.)
Wine/Drinks List (sometimes on a separate menu)

Naturally Speaking

Booking a Table Placing Your Order Complaining
  • I'd like to reserve / book a table for four at 8pm, please.
  • I'd like to reserve / book a table for a party of six at 8pm, please.
  • I'd like to book a table for two at 8 in the name of Hand, please.
  • Could we have a table by the window, please?
  • Could we have a non-smoking table, please?
  • Could we have a table away from the kitchen/toilets, please?
  • Could we have a booth, please?
  • Could you make sure it's a quiet table, please?
  • I'd like the .............., please.
  • For starters I'll have the soup and for the main course I'd like the roast beef.
  • Could I have chips instead of new potatoes, please?
  • What is the house special today?
  • Is there anything you would recommend?
  • Could I see the wine menu, please?
  • I'll have a bottle of the South African Cabernet Sauvignon.
  • I'll have a glass of house red/white, please.
  • Which wine would you recommend?
  • Excuse me, but my meal is cold.
  • Excuse me, we've been waiting for over half an hour for our drinks.
  • I'm sorry but I ordered the side salad not the vegetables.
  • Excuse me this steak is over done, I ordered rare.
  • I'm afraid this wine tastes corked.
  • Excuse me this wine isn't chilled properly.
Arriving at the Restaurant
During/After the Meal
  • Good evening, the name is Hand. I have a table booked for six.
  • Do you have the menu in English/German/French ..., please?
  • Do you have a high chair for young children, please?
  • Could we have a table over there, please?
  • I'm sorry but I asked for a table by the window.
  • Could we have an extra chair, please?
  • Could we have some more bread, please?
  • Do you have a pepper mill?
  • Could I have some dressing, please?
  • Could you pass me the salt, please?
  • That was delicious. My compliments to the chef.
  • Could I have the bill, please?
  • Do you take Visa?
  • We'd like separate bills, please.
  • Is service included?
  • No, please. This is on me. (When you wish to pay for everyone.)


Mr and Mrs Smith are out celebrating their wedding anniversary.
It's 8pm. Mr Smith (Jack) and Mrs Smith (Jill) are celebrating their 10th wedding anniversary. They have just arrived at the restaurant.
Mr Smith: Well here we are. What do you think?
Mrs Smith: It's lovely Jack. Are you sure we can afford it?
Mr Smith: Well I may have to do some washing up, but you're worth it.
The waiter arrives.
Waiter: Good evening sir, madame.
Mr Smith: Good evening. We have a reservation for a table for two in the name of Smith.
Waiter: Yes sir. May I take your coats?
Waiter takes their coats and hangs them up.
Mr & Mrs Smith: Thank you.
Waiter: Your welcome. Would you like to come to the table or would you prefer to order in the bar?
Mr Smith: I wouldn't mind an aperitif. We'll order in the bar.
Waiter: Please follow me, I'll bring you the menu in a moment.

Mr & Mrs Smith order their drinks at the bar and sit down to look at the menu.

Mrs Smith: Oh dear Jack, it's all in French!
Mr Smith: Well that's what we're paying for. Don't worry I've got an idea.
Waiter: Are you ready to order sir?
Mr Smith: Not really. Could you recommend something.
Waiter: Certainly sir. The fresh lobster is particularly good this evening, and for starters may I recommend a light consomme?
Mr Smith: Sounds lovely, what do you think dear?
Mrs Smith: Oh yes, I love lobster.
Waiter: So, that's two consomme and two lobsters. Would you like to look at the wine menu?
Mr Smith: Why don't you bring us what you think will go best. Nothing too expensive though.
Waiter: No problem sir. I'll call you as soon as your table is ready.
  The waiter walks away.
Mrs Smith: You are clever Jack, but what about dessert.
Mr Smith: Don't worry, they bring round a sweet trolley, so we just point at what we fancy!
A while later Mr & Mrs Smith have finished eating and are drinking their coffee.
Waiter: Was everything to your satisfaction?
Mr & Mrs Smith Yes, lovely thank you.
Mr Smith: The whole meal was delicious, our compliments to the chef. Unfortunately we have to be back for the baby-sitter so could we pay now?
Waiter: Certainly sir, I'll bring you the bill. Would you like me to order you a taxi.
Mr Smith: Yes that would be great, thank you.
Mrs Smith: What a nice man, we must leave him a good tip.
Mr Smith: Yes of course.

Games and Tests for this Vocabulary Unit

All these games and tests open in a new window.

Rumble (in conjunction with food)
Reading comprehension test
Word Search