Other Cantonese phrases useful at a restaurant

Manners / Requests

Cantonese Pronounciation Meaning
Lai ho mah. /  lei5 hou2 ma3Hi there.   (ni hao mah is the same greeting, but in Mandarin)
M'goi.Thank you (for service). Also "Service please!"
Doh jehThank you (for a gift / more formal).
Ding gwa gwa!Really good! (ie: Yummy!)
tIng1 yAt6 gin3
/ Chen yat gin
See you tomorrow!
sIk6 fan6Bon Appetit!
m4 goi1 mai4 dan1bill please (in a restaurant)
dzi2 gAn1napkin
tsoi3 dan1 menu
Mm chan lunch special
m4 goi1 (lœng5) wAi1 a table for (two), please
m4 goi1 lo2 (yAt1 fu3 tsa1) bei2 o5 can you please bring me (a fork)?

Table Items
Cantonese Pronounciation Meaning
Fai tje  / fai3 dzi2Chopsticks
tsi4 gAn1Spoon
dzi2 gAn1Napkin

Cantonese Pronounciation Meaning
Yut bui yeet nai cha.One cup hot milky tea
Yut bui dong nai cha.One cup iced milky tea.
Yut bui dong ga fey.One cup iced coffee.
Yut bui dong yeen-yuung.One cup iced coffee-and-tea (half & half).
Yut bui dong suh-oh2 One glass of cold water
Yut bui yeet nai cha.One cup hot milky tea

Other dishes
Cantonese Pronounciation Meaning
Yut wun jing sooy gow. One bowl of ONLY sooy gow (shrimp & mushroom dumplings) in soup
Yut wun sooy gow mein One bowl of sooy gow (shrimp & mushroom dumplings) with egg noodles in soup
Lai tong Daily chinese soup.
Ga lai hoi sin Curried (ga lai) seafood (hoi sin).
Yut deep gai lan. One dish gai-lan (Chinese broccoli with Oyster sauce).
Dao miu Snow pea shoots
Char siu BBQ pork (at restaurants with "hanging meats")
Yow gai Soya-sauce chicken  (at restaurants with "hanging meats")
Siu nap BBQ Duck (at restaurants with "hanging meats")
Siu yok Crispy-skin roast pork (at restaurants with "hanging meats")
Soy gao mein shrimp & mushroom dumplings in egg noodle soup.
Ga lay ow lam Curry beef flank
Gai lay gai Curry chicken
Fan Rice
Fun / ye fun Spahetti
Lo song tong Tomato soup
Lam gwa hoi sin Seafood with Japanese pumpkin sauce
Guang jao ho fan Beef with black bean sauce on rice
Si jiu ho fan Beef with pepper sauce on rice
Jah leung Chinese Donut with rice wrapper (and usually some small dried shrimp)
Yao dtsa gwai Same as jah leung, but just the donut – no rice wrapper
Dahn tsan Sweet crispy Chinese honey donut
Now Jap "bowl of guts" (actually translates to 'beef junk')
Dau fu fa blended tofu with sugar syrup (dessert) Great to settle the tummy!
Mongo bo dien Mango pudding (usually served with condensed milk)
Now bak yeep Steamed pork tripe
Chun gyun Spring Roll
Yo si chow mein ? with fried egg noodle
Som si chow mein ? with fried egg noodle

A great colloquial everyday Cantonese language reference can be found at

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