The importance of translating restaurant menus (correctly)

Translating restaurant menus, wine lists and, of course, your restaurant’s website, will attract new clients to your business and will help you increase your visibility and improve your image. And you cannot underestimate the power of the Internet today in the decision-making process.

Many clients plan their trips in advance, searching in online travel guides, blogs and tourism websites or directly in Google. For that reason, if your establishment provides information about its services in the potential client’s language, the probability that they opt for your business increases considerably.

Translating restaurant menus is it that important?

Also, we can’t forget about the client that is strolling down the street when their stomach growls and begins searching (often with great desperation) for a restaurant without having made a prior reservation. Now imagine that you are travelling outside your country and you are looking for a restaurant and you find one with a menu in English and another without. Which one would you enter? Very probably, you would prefer the establishment in which you can perfectly understand the menu and you know that you aren’t going to “eat blindly”, right?

Because of that, it is vital that people from other countries and that speak another language can understand the dishes and drinks that you offer. But, can anyone do this type of translation? Absolutely not.

Translation, food and culture should go together

Although facing any translation is never an easy task, restaurant menu translation requires a wide understanding of the gastronomy and culture of the country in which the translation is done and the public to which it is directed. To serve this purpose, the translation of food menus is typically done by native translators who live in our country and perfectly understand both cultures and languages.

The food culture of each country is its own world, and when also dealing with two very different cultures (like Russian or Chinese compared with Spanish culture), correct translation can become very complicated. Therefore, this kind of translation must be handled only by true translation professionals and not any cousin/friend/acquaintance who claims to understand the target language in order to avoid total blunders that can ruin the image of your establishment.

Translating restaurant menus professionally is  key

Currently, Barcelona receives more than five million tourists each year and the large majority of them are attracted by the good reputation of Spanish cuisine. Thus, they are potential critics of your restaurant through “word of mouth” or comments on specialised tourist forums, blogs, and websites.

So, don’t forget: perfect presentation of dishes is not enough if the menu is not capable of drawing in the client. And although it may seem trivial, it isn’t enough to simply translate the menu. It is also fundamentally important to translate the daily menu or seasonal specialties because these are typically the best offerings of any restaurant.

Offering professionally translated restaurant menus should be a must for any restaurant, something that, in the end, not only allows you to put your best foot forward with international clients, but also does tremendous justice to the work done in the kitchen.

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