RUSSIAN PHRASEBOOK (with audio and video)


When you go to eat to a restaurant, a good communication can keep you away from unpleasant surprises. You may be the client at a Russian restaurant or maybe a Russian client comes to your restaurant. In any case, here you're going to learn basic phrases to help you move smoothly from the main dish to the dessert. You'll even learn how to say "enjoy your meal!":

Summary with images and sound:
We've put together in video the most important words and phrases to help you memorize them.
After watching it, you can read and listen to all the vocabulary we've prepared for this topic.

Useful phrases when you are the client:
Useful phrases when you talk to a client:

app to learn Russian

We have the menu in English

Let's think of two possible scenarios. In the first one, you're in a Russian restaurant and you ask if they have the menu in English. In the second situation, a Russian client comes to your restaurant and asks if you have the menu in Russian:

  Вы хоти́те меню́ на друго́м языке́?
Would you like the menu in a different language?
vy ha-tí-tye mye-nyú na dru-góm ye-zy-kyé?

  У вас есть меню́ на други́х языка́х?
Do you have the menu in other languages?
u vas yest mye-nyú na dru-gíh ye-zy-káh?

  У нас есть меню́ на... англи́йском / испа́нском / неме́цком.
We have the menu in… English / Spanish / German
u nas yest mye-nyú na... an-glíjs-kam / is-páns-kam / nye-myéts-kam

  У вас есть меню́ на... англи́йском / испа́нском / неме́цком?
Do you have the menu in... English /
Spanish / German?

u vas yest mye-nyú na... an-glíjs-kam / is-páns-kam / nye-myéts-kam

Are you ready to order?

We already have the menu in our hands and we're ready to order. Sometimes we don't know what to have and we wait for a recommendation. For example a typical dish from the area. Below we're going to listen to those phrases:

  Вы гото́вы заказа́ть?
Are you ready to order?
vy ga-tó-vy za-ka-zát?

  Что вы рекоменду́ете?
What do you recommend?
shto vy rye-ka-myen-dú-ye-tye?

  Я рекоменду́ю э́то.
I recommend you this.
ya rye-ka-myen-dú-yu é-ta

  Вы хоти́те что́-то типи́чное?
Would you like something typical?
vy ha-tí-tye shtó-ta ti-pích-na-ye?

  Како́е са́мое типи́чное блю́до?
What's the most typical dish?
ka-kó-ye sá-ma-ye ti-pích-na-ye blyú-da?

  Вы вегетариа́нец (masc.)?
Вы вегетариа́нка (fem.)?

Are you a vegetarian?
vy vye-gye-ta-ri-á-nyets?
vy vye-gye-ta-ri-án-ka?

  Я вегетариа́нец (masc.)
Я вегетариа́нка (fem.)

I'm a vegetarian.
ya vye-gye-ta-ri-á-nyets
ya vye-gye-ta-ri-án-ka

Do you want to learn Russian? Visit these useful links:

If you have questions about Russian language, you can ask in our forum.
If you want to learn how to read the Russian alphabet, visit our reading course.
And for those wanting to learn more Russian, we have our basic Russian course.

What would you like?

We're going to see now 3 different ways of asking the same question: What would you like? As you can see, you have to complete the first sentence so it makes sense, while the other two phrases can be used as they are:

  Вы хоти́те...?
Would you like...? (literally: "Do you want...?")
vy ha-tí-tye...?

  Что бы вы хоте́ли?
What would you like?
shto by vy ha-tyé-li?

  Что вы бу́дете?
What will you have?
shto vy bú-dye-tye?

Let's add some more content to these phrases, so we can give extra information:
In the case of "вы хоти́те..." we can add the name of food or drinks:
  • Вы хоти́те + вино́ = Would you like + wine.  --->  Вы хоти́те вино́? = Would you like wine?
As for the other two sentences, we can use them to make questions such as "What would you like to drink?" or "Would you like a dessert?". Let's see some examples:

  Вы хоти́те... ры́бу / мя́со / па́сту / сала́т?
Would you like... fish / meat / pasta / a salad?
vy ha-tí-tye... rý-bu / myá-sa / pás-tu / sa-lát?

  Вы хоти́те десе́рт?
Would you like a dessert?
vy ha-tí-tye dye-syért?

  Что бы вы хоте́ли... на заку́ску /
на гла́вное / на десе́рт?

shto by vy ha-tyé-li... na za-kús-ku
na gláv-na-ye / na dye-syért?
What would you like... for starters /
for the main course / for dessert?

  Что вы бу́дете пить?
What will you drink?
shto vy bú-dye-tye pit?

How to say "I'd like..."

We're done reading the menu and we're ready to order. In Russian there are two ways of saying "I'd like...": one for men and a different one for women. You don't need to know the grammatical explanation of this. Just use the right form for you:

  Я хоте́л бы... (say this if you are a man)
I'd like...
ya ha-tyél by...

  Я хоте́ла бы... (say this if you are a woman)
I'd like...
ya ha-tyé-la by...

  Я хоте́л бы... мя́со / ры́бу / па́сту / сала́т.
I'd like... meat / fish / pasta / a salad.
ya ha-tyél by... myá-sa / rý-bu / pás-tu / sa-lát

  Я хоте́ла бы... мя́со / ры́бу / па́сту / сала́т.
I'd like... meat / fish / pasta / a salad.
ya ha-tyé-la by... myá-sa / rý-bu / pás-tu / sa-lát

  Я хоте́л бы десе́рт.
I'd like a dessert.
ya ha-tyél by dye-syért

  Я хоте́л бы пить...
I'd like to drink...
ya ha-tyél by pit...

  Я хоте́л бы э́то.
I'd like this / that.
ya ha-tyél by é-ta
You can say this while pointing to the dish (on the menu or what someone else is eating) you'd like to have.
This is a useful phrase to say a lot with few words.

Other phrases

We've done this list with a choice of phrases that you may hear at a restaurant. As for "Smoking or non-smoking?", it's something that soon will be a thing of the past, but it's still useful to know it in certain countries:

  Куря́щий и́ли некуря́щий?
Smoking or non-smoking?
ku-ryá-schij í-li nye-ku-ryá-schij?

  У вас есть зо́на для куря́щих?
Do you have a smoking area?
u vas yest zó-na dlya ku-ryá-schih?

  Еда́ холо́дная.
The food is cold.
ye-dá ha-lód-na-ya

  Со льдо́м? / Безо льда́?
With ice? / Without ice?
sa l-dóm / bye-za l-dá?

  Со льдо́м / Безо льда́.
With ice / Without ice.
sa l-dóm / bye-za l-dá

  Прия́тного аппети́та!
Enjoy your meal!
pri-yát-na-va a-pye-tí-ta

Thank you!

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