sábado, 27 de maio de 2017


The first thing you need to do after deciding to eat out with your friends or family is to book a table. You might be finding it weird to see the word book, most commonly known as a noun, used as a verb here. But in this context, booking means to make an arrangement in advance, to eat there a particular time.

The person on the other side of the line might need to ask you how many people will be in your party. And now we have another common word being used as something else. When it comes to reservations, a party is just a group of people who arrange to eat together. They need to get that information in advance because if it's a party of 5 people, for example, they'll be setting the table for five people. (when you set the table, you arrange it)

So let's suppose you and your family have gone through the process of booking a table and have finally made it to the restaurant. The moment you all sit at the table, you're handed the menu. The menu is nothing but a printed list of meals that a restaurant serves. There are some kinds of menus. A set menu displays a list of dishes you can order together. It can include a main meal, a starter and dessert, all for a set price. Let's not forget that most restaurants have "today's specials", which are extra dishes cooked on the day that are not on the main menu. The drinks menu shows the soft drinks and alcoholic drinks that the restaurant can provide you with. And if the restaurant is a little bit fancy, you can get a wine menu.

I've previously mentioned some of the parts of the meal, such as starter, main course and dessert. But we need to get to know them better. A starter is the first course of the meal, which basically consists of small portions of food, served either hot or cold. You might want to skip this course if you're not very hungry. Then we have the main course, which as the name suggests itself, it's the main part of the meal. They're medium to large portions of food, which may or may not be served with vegetables. Then we move on to the side dish, which is a small portion of food you eat with a main meal. Side dishes are often shared with other people eating at the table. And finally we get to the dessert, which is the last and maybe most beloved part of a meal, especially by children. I say that because it is typically consisted of a sweet dish, such as cake, pudding or ice-cream. If you don't like sweets, you can alternatively ask for a savoury dish, which includes for example cheese and biscuits instead.

It's not a great part of our culture here in Brazil, but in places like the United Stated it's important that you leave some tip before you leave the restaurant. A tip is a small sum of money given to restaurant staff, for good service. And that's about it for a good night out at the restaurant. Talk to you next time!

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