How should I order food from a menu in a restaurant?

In English I'd usually say something like 'I'll have the beef' or 'one of these and two of those' while pointing.

In the past in China I have simply pointed and said 一个 or 这个, but I imagine that is not quite correct :)

  • As a cultural aside, does anyone else find it odd how waiters/waitresses on the mainland will stand beside you, waiting with pen poised on notepad while you peruse the menu? Some menus can be quite large, and I always feel guilty if I take too long! – Cocowalla Aug 27 '12 at 10:56
  • I also get annoyed by that. You can always tell them 我们还没决定 so they go away. – Stumpy Joe Pete Aug 28 '12 at 5:24

Actually, it is correct when you point and say "这个", but Chinese speakers often use "一份" instead of "一个". The complete sentence may look like "我想要一份XXX" or “我要这个”.

Hope this may help you.

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  • 1
    The meaning of 一份 would be something like "one portion of" btw. – Torsten Aug 27 '12 at 10:21

In addition to Chang's answer, you may also ask in the following manner:


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  • So I can use 外加 and 还有 to join different items I am ordering? – Cocowalla Aug 27 '12 at 10:54
  • @Cocowalla, absolutely. – 杨以轩 Aug 27 '12 at 13:34
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    You could also use 来, as in 来一份牛排套餐. – jogloran Aug 27 '12 at 13:56
  • @jogloran I've never seen used like that - I feel another question coming on! – Cocowalla Aug 27 '12 at 14:54
  • 来 seems to be more common from my experience. Just to confuse the matter further, you could also say 请给我来一份牛排套餐 – deutschZuid Aug 27 '12 at 23:25

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