Beginner Dialogs - At a Restaurant

Mom & toddler girl having cake joyfully in cafe
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Knowing how to order food in a restaurant is an important first task for any beginning level English learner. Here are two short dialogs to help you learn common questions and answers used at a restaurant. 

At a Restaurant Alone

This dialog provides most the basic questions you'll need to know when going to a restaurant alone: 

Waitperson: Hi. How are you doing this afternoon?
Customer: Fine, thank you.

Can I see a menu, please?
Waitperson: Certainly, here you are.
Customer: Thank you. What's today's special?
Waitperson: Grilled tuna and cheese on rye.
Customer: That sounds good. I'll have that.
Waitperson: Would you like something to drink?
Customer: Yes, I'd like a coke.
Waitperson: Thank you. (returning with the food) Here you are. Enjoy your meal!
Customer: Thank you.
Waitperson: Can I get you anything else?
Customer: No thanks. I'd like the check, please.
Waitperson: That'll be $14.95.
Customer: Here you are. Keep the change!
Waitperson: Thank you! Have a good day!
Customer: Goodbye.

Key Vocabulary

Learn this key vocabulary from the dialogue to be ready the next time you go to a restaurant:

Can I see a menu?
Here you are
Enjoy your meal!
Would you like ...
Can I get you anything else?
I'd like the check, please.
That'll be ...
Have a good day!

At a Restaurant with Friends

Next, practice eating with friends at a restaurant with these questions to help choose what to eat:

Kevin: The spaghetti looks really good. 
Alice: It is! I had it the last time I was here.
Peter: How is the pizza, Alice?
Alice: It's good, but I think the pasta is better. What would you recommend?
Waitperson: I'd recommend the lasagna. It's excellent!
Alice: That sounds great. I'll have that.
Waitperson: Fine.

Would you like an appetizer?
Alice: No, lasagna is more than enough for me!
Kevin: I think I'll have the lasagna as well.
Waitperson: Right. That's two lasagnas. Would you care for an appetizer?
Kevin: Yes, I'll take the calamari. 
Peter: Oh, that sounds good! I can't decide between the chicken marsala and grilled fish.
Waitperson: The fish is fresh, so I'd recommend that.
Peter: Great. I'll have the fish. I'd also like a salad.
Waitperson: What would you like to drink?
Kevin: I'll have water.
Alice: I'd like a beer.
Peter: I'll take a glass of red wine.
Waitperson: Thank you. I'll get the drinks and the appetizers.
Kevin:  Thank you. 

Key Vocabulary

Here are some key phrases used to discuss food in a restaurant when deciding on what to eat:

The spaghetti / steak / chicken looks good.
How is the pizza / fish / beer?
What would you recommend?
I'd recommend the lasagna / steak / pizza.
Would you like an appetizer?
Would you care for an appetizer / a beer / a cocktail?
I'll take / have a beer / steak / a glass of wine.

At a Restaurant Quiz

Use one word to fill in the gaps to complete the dialog:

waitperson: Good afternoon. 
customer: Good afternoon. Can I see a _______, please? (1)
waitperson: Certainly, _______ you are.

customer. Everything looks good. What would you __________? (3)
waitperson: I'd recommend our chicken or the fresh fish.
customer: Great, I'll _______ the fresh fish. (4)
waitperson: Would you ________ an appetizer? (5)
customer: No, thank you. 
waitperson: Can I get you _________ to drink? (6)
customer: Yes, I'd ________ a glass of milk, please. (7)
waitperson: Excellent. _________ your meal! (8)
customer: Thank you.


customer: I'd like the _______, please. (9)
waitperson: Certainly, that'll _____ $25. (10)
customer: Thank you. Keep the ______! (11)
waitperson: Thank you.
customer: Have a ________ day! (12)


  1. menu
  2. here
  3. recommend
  4. take / have
  5. like
  6. anything / something
  7. like
  8. enjoy
  9. check / bill
  10. be
  11. change
  12. good / great

More Beginning Dialogues

Practicing dialogues in English will help you develop the English communication skills you need for a variety of tasks.

Make sure you are able to do the following in English: