Thursday, 1 March 2012

What Are You Going To Have?


SCENARIO
Imagine you find yourself in a situation like the ones below:


  1. You have have gone into a bar or similar establishment alone. You may go directly to the bar/ counter. Perhaps you sit at a table . After the customary exchange of greetings, the person behind the bar/ counter or the table waiter will ask what you would like to have. In Spanish, he/ she is likely to say something like: "what are you going to have?".
  2. You have have gone into a bar or similar establishment with someone else (for example, a relative, a friend or a colleague). You may sit at the bar/ counter or at a table . Before you are approached by the barman/ waiter, your relative, friend or colleague says to you something like: "what are you going to have?"

In Spanish, the other person could choose to be less formal and say:
¿Qué vas a tomar?

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to be a little bit more formal and say:
¿Qué va a tomar (usted)?




OUR TIP
This is a typical case of ordering food/ drink. The first thing to note is that when stating what you want to order,  you DO NOT need to be concerned about the level of formality in the other person's question. Your main concern should be about communicating what you are going to order. Perhaps you want to order:
  • Something to drink.
  • A snack.

Here are some examples of what you could order and how you could order it:
  • Un agua mineral con gas, por favor (a fizzy/ sparkling mineral water please).
  • Un agua mineral sin gas, por favor (a still mineral water please).
  • Un café con leche, por favor (a white coffee, please).
  • Un café solo, por favor (a black coffee, please).
  • Un vaso de leche, por favor   (a glass of milk, please)
  • Un vino blanco, por favor (a white wine please).
  • Un vino tinto, por favor (a red wine please).
  • Un zumo de naranja, por favor (an orange juice, please) .
  • Una caña, por favor (a glass of draught beer please).
  • Una cerveza, por favor (a beer please).
  • Una cerveza de barril (a draught beer).
  • Una jarra cerveza, por favor (a jug of draught please)
  • Un bocadillo de queso, por favor (a cheese sandwich, please).
  • Un emparedado de queso, por favor (a cheese sandwich, please).
  • Un sándwich de queso, por favor (a cheese sandwich, please).
  • Un bocadillo de jamón, por favor (a ham sandwich, please).
  • Un emparedado de jamón, por favor (a ham sandwich, please).
  • Un sándwich de jamón, por favor (a ham sandwich, please)
  • Unas aceitunas, por favor (some olives, please).
  • Unos boquerones, por favor (some anchovies, please).
  • Unas patatas bravas, por favor (some spicy chips, please).


Now you should practice answering the question:
¿Qué va a tomar (usted)?


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