At the Restaurant

English in Use | Conversations | Vocabulary | Speaking | Travel English

English in Use

The Activities categorised as English in Use look at the way we use English in everyday life. The Activities cover the actual use of English and examine grammar, punctuation, and functionality of the language. For any student studying English as a second language or English as a foreign language, English in Use Activities are particularly useful for improving speaking, writing, reading, and listening skills. These Activities will help you to develop your confidence in using different types of text such as fiction, newspapers and magazines, as well as learning to speak and write about things such as the weather and travel, as well as preparing you for typical situations such as ordering in a restaurant or buying a train ticket.


Conversation or dialogue simulations use the latest technology to bring you as close an experience as you can get to an actual English conversation. By imitating real world conversations, you can practice your communication skills on any device and receive instant feedback on your mistakes and your accuracy. The conversation simulators also give you the chance to look at specific areas of English where you might be having problems.


Did you know that there are over 600,000 words in English? That's a lot of words, and far more than any human being could ever manage to learn. Even Shakespeare only used around 55,000 different words in all of his works. Mind you, he did actually invent quite a few of them. To get a good mastery of English, you do need to expand your vocabulary as much as possible. The more words you know, the better your English will be. The Activities here will help you to quickly develop your vocabulary.


It's not easy to teaching speaking skills remotely through a website, however good the site is. To really practice your speaking skills, you need someone to speak to who can correct your mistakes as you go. The Activities here will go some way to helping you to improve your speaking skills by helping you to mirror the speech you hear in the lesson. In this way, you can notice how your speech differs from that in the Activities and, by recording your own speech, you can adjust your pronunciation to more accurately match that in the Activities.

Travel English

If you find yourself travelling to an English speaking country, these Activities will be very valuable to you. The Activities look at some of the most common vocabulary you will need in situations like buying a train or plane ticket, booking a hotel, asking for directions, and many more situations that the traveller can find themselves in.

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Learn how to order food in a typical restaurant in British English. In this lesson we will look at some vocabulary, do a listening exercise, a listening and reading exercise, a conversation simulation, and look at how to sound polite in a restaurant setting. The vocabulary includes alky, delicious, dump, fancy, filling, full, menu, order, pretty, pudding, seafood, slice, soft drinks, sparkling, special, starving, stuffed, and sweet.


alky - noun a person who drinks alcohol to excess habitually

delicious - adj. greatly pleasing or entertaining; extremely pleasing to the sense of taste; noun variety of sweet eating apples

dump - noun a place where supplies can be stored; (computer science) a copy of the contents of a computer storage device; sometimes used in debugging programs; a piece of land where waste materials are dumped; a coarse term for defecation; verb drop (stuff) in a heap or mass; sever all ties with, usually unceremoniously or irresponsibly; throw away as refuse; sell at artificially low prices; knock down with force; fall abruptly

fancy - adj. not plain; decorative or ornamented; noun a kind of imagination that was held by Coleridge to be more casual and superficial than true imagination; something many people believe that is false; a predisposition to like something; verb have a fancy or particular liking or desire for; imagine; conceive of; see in one's mind

filling - noun the act of filling something; (dentistry) a dental appliance consisting of any of various substances (as metal or plastic) inserted into a prepared cavity in a tooth; a food mixture used to fill pastry or sandwiches etc.; flow into something (as a container); any material that fills a space or container; the yarn woven across the warp yarn in weaving

full - adj. having the normally expected amount; complete in extent or degree and in every particular; containing as much or as many as is possible or normal; (of sound) having marked depth and body; filled to satisfaction with food or drink; having ample fabric; constituting the full quantity or extent; complete; being at a peak or culminating point; adv. to the greatest degree or extent; completely or entirely; (`full' in this sense is used as a combining form); noun the time when the moon is fully illuminated; verb make (a garment) fuller by pleating or gathering; beat for the purpose of cleaning and thickening; increase in phase

menu - noun an agenda of things to do; a list of dishes available at a restaurant; (computer science) a list of options available to a computer user; the dishes making up a meal

order - noun the act of putting things in a sequential arrangement; (architecture) one of original three styles of Greek architecture distinguished by the type of column and entablature used or a style developed from the original three by the Romans; a degree in a continuum of size or quantity; a commercial document used to request someone to supply something in return for payment and providing specifications and quantities; a body of rules followed by an assembly; (often plural) a command given by a superior (e.g., a military or law enforcement officer) that must be obeyed; a request for food or refreshment (as served in a restaurant or bar etc.); (biology) taxonomic group containing one or more families; a group of person living under a religious rule; established customary state (especially of society); a legally binding command or decision entered on the court record (as if issued by a court or judge); a formal association of people with similar interests; logical or comprehensible arrangement of separate elements; (usually plural) the status or rank or office of a Christian clergyman in an ecclesiastical hierarchy; a condition of regular or proper arrangement; verb place in a certain order; bring order to or into; make a request for something; give instructions to or direct somebody to do something with authority; issue commands or orders for; assign a rank or rating to; arrange thoughts, ideas, temporal events; appoint to a clerical posts; bring into conformity with rules or principles or usage; impose regulations

pretty - adj. pleasing by delicacy or grace; not imposing; (used ironically) unexpectedly bad; adv. used as an intensifier (`jolly' is used informally in Britain)

pudding - noun any of various soft sweet desserts thickened usually with flour and baked or boiled or steamed; (British) the dessert course of a meal (`pud' is used informally); any of various soft thick unsweetened baked dishes

seafood - noun edible fish (broadly including freshwater fish) or shellfish or roe etc

slice - noun a golf shot that curves to the right for a right-handed golfer; a spatula for spreading paint or ink; a thin flat piece cut off of some object; a share of something; a serving that has been cut from a larger portion; a wound made by cutting; verb hit a ball so that it causes a backspin; cut into slices; hit a ball and put a spin on it so that it travels in a different direction; make a clean cut through

soft drink - noun nonalcoholic beverage (usually carbonated)

sparkling - adj. used of wines and waters; charged naturally or artificially with carbon dioxide; shining with brilliant points of light like stars; noun a rapid change in brightness; a brief spark or flash

special - adj. for a special service or occasion; adapted to or reserved for a particular purpose; surpassing what is common or usual or expected; having a specific function or scope; unique or specific to a person or thing or category; first and most important; added to a regular schedule; noun a television production that features a particular person or work or topic; a special offering (usually temporary and at a reduced price) that is featured in advertising; a dish or meal given prominence in e.g. a restaurant

starving - adj. suffering from lack of food; noun the act of depriving of food or subjecting to famine

stuffed - adj. filled with something; crammed with food


sweet - adj. pleasing to the senses; (used of wines) having a high residual sugar content; having or denoting the characteristic taste of sugar; having a natural fragrance; not containing or composed of salt water; having a sweet nature befitting an angel or cherub; pleasing to the ear; pleasing to the mind or feeling; with sweetening added; not soured or preserved; adv. in an affectionate or loving manner (`sweet' is sometimes a poetic or informal variant of `sweetly'); noun the taste experience when sugar dissolves in the mouth; a food rich in sugar; English phonetician; one of the founders of modern phonetics (1845-1912); the property of tasting as if it contains sugar; a dish served as the last course of a meal

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