Dining out and restaurant related Japanese is essential in a country whose food culture is amazingly rich. Not only just in its long-held traditions, but also in its value on taste, presentation and hygiene. It also offers great depth and diversity in terms of its international dining experience. So much so, that its array of options should suit all kinds of foodies.nOf course, some restaurants are versatile in terms of their multi-lingual support. The Tokyo Government even created a website that lists all restaurants which provide multi-lingual menus.nHowever, if you wish to indulge in this culinary journey, particularly using Japans native tongue, then the breadth of your options will also skyrocket. In this guide, we will try to cover some of the most common terms and phrases. Ultimately, this will help to boost your restaurant experience and grasp of the language too.nnnnIntroduction to the BasicsnHere are some phrases we have covered before in previous posts, but which are good to review. Both in terms of language review and etiquette, these include the following:n (Itadakimasu) in simple terms means I humbly accept or receive this food or dish.n () (Gochisousama (deshita)) this simply means thank you for the delicious meal or drink. The expression is commonly used in both restaurants and when eating at a friends or family members place, usually after finishing a meal or drink.n (Irrashaimase) directly translated it can mean either please come in or welcome to my store. This is a common phrase you will continue to hear every time you enter a restaurant, izakaya (Japanese style bar) or bar and more.nReserving the RestaurantnSo youve got your eyes on a particular dining experience, the ratings are great. Hence, you have lined up a time and date with your friends/partner, but the restaurant in question only accepts telephone bookings. This section is for you, to take you through the recommended language you should use, and the various situations you may come across:n() (Odenwa arigatou gozaimasu. Amejingu Jyapan Resutoran desu) Thank you for calling. This is the Amazing Japan Restaurant.n() () (Yoyaku wo onegai shitan desu ga) I was hoping to make a reservation.nIf the staff need you to wait a moment they will usually say something like:n() () (Shou shou omachi kudasai) Please wait a minute (Very Polite).nOnce they are able to answer your phone call, they will usually ask you the following phrase:n() () () (Ohi nichi ojikan wa okimari desu ka) Have you decided on a date and time?nIt is always good to provide both month and date. Simply to avoid any misunderstandings with days (ie Monday this week, next week? etc), similar to the following:n6() 3() 7() () () (Rokugatsu mikka ni shichiji kara sannin de yoyaku shitai no desu ga, aite imasu ka) I would like to make a reservation on June 3rd, from 7 pm for 3 people. Do you have seating available then?nYou may also go through these items (date, time, number of people, etc) one at a time, something like:n (Ohi nichi ha itsu deshou ka) When would you like to make a reservation?n9() 14() (Kugatsu Juuyokka desu) For September the 14th.nIf they continue with the questioning, this is probably a good sign that the date is ok. They will then continue to ask for time and number of people:n() (Ojikan wa nanji kara deshou ka) From what time would you like to make your booking?n6() (Roku jihan desu) From 6.30.n() (Nan mei sama deshou ka) How many people?n4 (Yon mei desu) For 4 people.nOnce they have taken your request, they will usually want to request at least your name and telephone number for the booking. This will go similar to the following:n() () () (Onamae wo oshiete itadakemasu deshou ka) Could you please tell me your name?n (Matto to moushimasu) My name is Matt.n() (Odenwa bango wo oshiete itadakemasu deshou ka) Could you please tell me your phone number?n070-4567-9456 (Zero-nana-zero no yon-go-roku-nana no kyuu-yon-go-roku desu) My phone number is 070-4567-9456.nOnce the details have been confirmed, the staff should then confirm the details back to you.n91464() (Arigatou Gozaimasu. Sore de ha kugatsu juuyokka rokujihan yori, matto sama yonmei de goyoyaku uketamawarimashita). Thank you for your details. I would like to confirm your reservation on September 14th from 6.30, for 4 people under the name Matt.nIf for some reason they cannot accept your booking you will usually hear one of the following replies:n() () () (Moushiwake gozaimasen. Tadaima, manseki ni natte orimasu) Sorry, we are full now (there are no seats available at the moment).n() (Moushiwake gozaimasen. Sono hi yoyaku ga ippai desu) Sorry, we are booked out on that day.nSometimes the day might be ok, but they may not be able to cater for your time, in which case they should ask you something like:n7? (Moushiwake gozaimasen. Sono jikan ha yoyaku ga ippai desu. Shichi ji han ha ikakaga deshou ka) Sorry, we are booked out at that time. How about 7.30 ?nIf this works you can simply say:n (hai, onegai shimasu) Yes, that will be fine.nor if you know this time will not work, better to ask for another time or day altogether.n() (Sumimasen, betsu no hi ni yoyaku shitai no desu ga) Sorry, I would like to reserve on a different day.nFrom there you may have to start the process all over again nEntering the RestaurantnInitially, when entering a restaurant, you may get asked if you have a reservation.n (Konban wa. Irrashaimase) Good Evening. Welcome (to the store/restaurant).n () (Go yoyaku wa sarete imasu deshou ka) Do you have a reservation?nIf you do, you can just tell simply the name the reservation is under.n() (Yoyaku wo shite imasu. Matto desu) Yes I do. The reservation name is under Matt.nIf you didnt make a reservation out can simply say:n() () (Sumimasen. Go yoyaku shitai no desu ga, aite imasu ka?) Sorry, I didnt make a reservation, but do you have any seating available?nSome restaurants do not accept reservations, so in this instance, they will simply ask you:n() () () (nan mei sama desu ka?) How many people? (Polite)nFor which you can reply the number of people you have with you:n1()/2() (hitori/futari desu) One person/two people.n3() (san nin desu) Three people.nThe restaurant may also be separated by smoking and non-smoking areas, in that case, you are given a choice:n()() (Kitsuenseki, Kinenseki no dochira ni) Would you prefer smoking or non-smoking seat?n (Kitsuenseki wo onegai shimasu) Smoking area, please.n (Kinenseki wo onegaishimasu) Non-smoking area, please.nOnce that has all been worked out, the staff may say something similar to:n() () (O seki he goanai itashimasu) I will show you to your seat.nWhen the resetaurant is full or has been fully booked they may say something like:n() () (Moushiwake gozaimasen. Honjitsu ha kashi kiri ni natte orimasu) Sorry, we are fully booked (due to a party or event).n () (Moushiwake gozaimasen. Tadaima manseki ni natte orimasu) Sorry, we are full now (there are no seats available at the moment).nUnfortunately, then it is time to find a different restaurant.nOrdering from the MenunIt is common in Japan to call the waiter when you are ready to order, and a simple at a moderate volume is enough to get someones enough attention. Alternatively, the staff may already by circling your table and just waiting for you to finalise your choices.nAt first, you may want to also check if they have an English menu, to ensure you have a better idea of the options. Then you can try:n() (Sumimasen. Eigo no menu wa arimasu ka) Excuse me. Do you have an English menu?nTo which they will either bring you the menu or politely apologise that they dont.nUnsure of something you see on the menu? You could always ask:n () (Sore wa nan desu ka) What is this? (by pointing to something on the menu)nIn the event that they dont have an English menu, you could always try to get their recommendation with:n (Osusume wa nan desu ka) What do you recommend?nOnce you have got that stage, it is customary to open with:n() (Chuumon wo onegai shimasu) Id like to order.nor:n (Oodaa shite mo ii desu ka) Can we order please?nOrdering food or drink from the menu is basically the same, with the key difference being just the name. For example, ordering a beer is simply:n (Biiru wo onegai shimasu) Can I have a beer, please.nThe same applies to food, for example, if you would like the fried chicken from an izakaya:n() (Karaage wo onegai shimasu) Can I have the fried chicken, please.nIn terms of drinks, you can always ask for the same again with the simple phrase:n() (Okawari wo onegai shimasu) Same again, please.nWhen you need to ask for more than one of something, you would usually insert the number after the beverage or dish name, for example:n 3() (Biiru wo mittsu onegai shimasu) Can I have 3 beers, please.nYou can also combine your requests for example:n3 1() (Biiru wo mittsu to, Wain wo hitotsu onegai shimasu) Can I have 3 beers and 1 wine, please.nThe above phrase can also be used for selecting meals.nAssuming everything has gone relatively smoothly, then the waiter will thank you for your order and tell you to wait for the food and drinks. Something similar to:n() () (Shou shou omachi kudasai) Please wait a minute (Very Polite).nFinishing Up and Bill PaymentsnYouve finished your meal and hopefully, it was good as your expected, and its now time to finalise the bill. You can actually make a simple gesture to request the check with your two index fingers in an X formation, similar to the picture below:nYou could also just get the staffs attention with the usual:n () () (Sumimasen. O kaikei wo onegai shimasu) Excuse me, can we have the bill/check, please.nIn this phrase, ( or O kaikei) means the bill, but you can also use ( or Chekku), which is another way to say bill or invoice.nAnother alternative is just to use () (Gochisousama (deshita)) indicating you are finished and thanking them for the meal. At this point, they should understand it is time to bring you the bill. You can also use this phrase as you leave the premises, which is usually the best way to show appreciation for all the dishes you ate.nMore Useful PhrasesnThere maybe circumstances where you need to make special requests, so we have provided the additional useful phrases below for menus:n() (Okosama menyuu wa arimasu ka) Do you have a childrens menu?n (Bejitarian menyuu wa arimasu ka) Do you have a vegitarian menu?nIf you need to request an item without a particular ingredient you can use the following sentences:n () () ? (Sarada wa tamago wo nuki ni shite moraemasu ka?) Can I have the salad without egg?