Speak / Lesson 37

A Dialogue in a Restaurant

Up until now, we’ve been listening to conversations between Leyla and various family members. In Lesson 37, we listen to a dialogue that takes place in a restaurant, first between a host and patrons, and then between a waitress and patrons. This should sound familiar to you, because much of this vocab was covered in unit 2. This will serve as a reminder and also present some new vocabulary for you to use when visiting a restaurant.


how are you?

Note: In Persian, as in many other languages, there is a formal and an informal way of speaking. We will be covering this in more detail in later lessons. For now, however, chetor-ee is the informal way of asking someone how they are, so it should only be used with people that you are familiar with. hālé shomā chetor-é is the formal expression for ‘how are you.’

Spelling note: In written Persian, words are not capitalized. For this reason, we do not capitalize Persian words written in phonetic English in the guides.


I’m well

Pronunciation tip: kh is one of two unique sounds in the Persian language that is not used in the English language. It should be repeated daily until mastered, as it is essential to successfully speak Persian. Listen to the podcast for more information on how to make the sound.

Persian English
salām hello
chetor-ee how are you?
khoobam I’m well
merci thank you
khayli very
khayli khoobam I’m very well
khoob neestam I’m not well
man me/I
bad neestam I’m not bad
ālee great
chetor-een? how are you? (formal)
hālé shomā chetor-é? how are you? (formal)
hālet chetor-é? how are you? (informal)
khoob-ee? are you well? (informal)
mamnoonam thank you
chetor peesh meeré? how’s it going?
ché khabar? what’s the news? (what’s up?)

Leyla: Hello everyone and welcome to learn Persian with Chai and Conversation.

Matt: If you’re new to the program, please check out our previous lessons at www.chaiandconversation.com, with CHAI spelled CHAI

Leyla: For the rest of you, you know that we are now well into the dialogue series in our program. Up until now, we’ve been listening to conversations between me and various family members. Today, we’re going to change it up a bit and go through a dialogue heard at a restaurant.

Matt: This should sound familiar to you, because much of this vocab was covered in unit 2.

Leyla: This will serve as a reminder and also present some new vocabulary for you to use when visiting a restaurant. But enough talking for now, Matt, are you ready to begin the lesson?

Matt: Ready

Leyla: Great, then let’s begin to learn Persian with Chai and Conversation.

Leyla: So we’re going to get right on with the dialogue and listen to the first two sentences.

Beh restooraneh shandeez khosh amadeen! Khayli mamnoon

Leyla: So first, someone who we assume to be the host says ‘beh restooraneh shandeez khosh amadeen.’ We learned the phrase khosh amadeen before- it means something along the lines of welcome. In fact, if you break down the word welcome, it’s two words- well and come. Khosh amadeen is literally just that- well come. Khosh amadeen

Matt: Khosh amadeen

Leyla: So beh restooraneh shandeez khosh amadeen means welcome to Shandeez restaurant. Beh restooraneh shandeez khosh amadeen

Matt: Beh restooraneh shandeez khosh amadeen.

Leyla: One note here, the reason the word restooran is possessive in this sentence is because you’re basically saying ‘the restaurant of Shandeez.’ Shandeez is the name of the restaurant. The host could have dropped the word restooran and just said ‘beh shandeez khosh amadeen.’ That would have been fine too. So, beh shandeez khosh amadeen.

Matt: Beh shandeez khosh amadeen

Leyla: And of course we have heard countless times, khayli mamnoon

Matt: Khayli mamnoon

Leyla: Or thank you very much. Next, the host asks:

Matt: Chand nafar hasteen? Do nafar

Leyla: Nafar is another word for person. Nafar

Matt: Nafar

Leyla: So chand nafar hasteen

Matt: Chand nafar hasteen

Leyla: Meaning ‘how many are you’. Chand nafar hasteen?

Matt: Chand nafar hasteen?

Leyla: Of course, since these people don’t know each other, the host is using formal speech. The reply is ‘do nafar’

Matt: Do nafar

Leyla: And what does this mean Matt?

Matt: It means two people.

Leyla: Right. The host has one more line, so let’s listen to that by itself.

Beseeyar aali. Befarmayeen een taraf

Leyla: So, first the phrase beseeyar aali. Aali we’ve heard before, it means great. Aali

Matt: Aali

Leyla: Beseeyar means ‘extremely’. Beseeyar

Matt: Beseeyar

Leyla: So extremely great, is what this host says. Beseeyar aali

Matt: Beseeyar aali

Leyla: Beseeyar can be used with other words as well. For example, very good would be beseeyar khoob

Matt: Beseeyar khoob

Leyla: Or extremely bad would be:

Matt: Beseeyar bad

Leyla: Exactly. So then the host says ‘befarmeeyeen een taraf’. We’ve covered this before. Taraf is the word for way. So the host is saying ‘please come this way. Befarmayeen een taraf

Matt: Befarmayeen een taraf

Leyla: Great, now let’s listen to the next two lines of conversation, now at the table:

Salam. Man niloufar hastam. Emshab az shoma pazeerayee meekonam. Noosheedanee chee mayl dareen?

Man doogh meekham.

Leyla: So first, we hear the lines

Salam. Man niloufar hastam.

Leyla: This is very simple, and means

Matt: Hello, I am Niloufar

Leyla: Exactly. Then she says

Matt: Emshab az shoma pazeerayee meekonam.

Leyla: So this is a bit more complicated. The word pazeerayee is one we’ve covered before. It means to serve. Pazeerayee

Matt: Pazeerayee

Leyla: So she says az shoma pazeerayee meekonam, meaning, I will be serving you. Az shoma pazeerayee meekonam

Matt: Az shoma pazeerayee meekonam

Leyla: And of course we know the word emshab. It means

Matt: Tonight

Leyla: So all together, it’s emshab az shoma pazeerayee meekonam

Matt: Emshab az shoma pazeerayee meekonam

Leyla: Then she asks:

Noosheedanee chee mayl dareen?

Leyla: We’ve covered the word noosheedanee before. It means drink. Noosheedanee

Matt: Noosheedanee

Leyla: The full sentence means what drink would you like? Noosheedanee chee mayl dareen?

Matt: Noosheedanee chee mayl dareen?

Leyla: Perfect. So the reply is:

Man doogh meekham.

Leyla: Doogh is the very popular Persian yogurt drink. Doogh

Matt: Doogh

Leyla: So man doogh meekham

Matt: Man doogh meekham

Leyla: I’d want doogh

Next two sentences:

Man ab bedooneh yakh meekham.

Chashm. Alan bar meegardam.

Leyla: So first, man ab bedooneh yakh meekham. Perhaps you’ll remember this from the previous lesson. Ab bedooneh yakh is water without ice. So Man ab bedooneh yakh meekham. I want water without ice. Man ab bedooneh yakh meekham

Matt: Man ab bedooneh yakh meekham

Leyla: The waitress replies:

Chashm. Alan bar meegardam.

Leyla: Chashm means ok. Chashm

Matt: Chashm

Leyla: And then she says ‘I’ll be right back’ or alan bar meegardam

Matt: Alan bar meegardam

Leyla: So as we always do at the half point of every conversation, which we are at right now, let’s listen to the entire conversation up to this point to see how much we understand:

Next two sentences:

Befarmayeen. Een doog, een ham ab bedooneh yakh. Ghaza chee mayl dareen?

Man hanooz nemeedooneem. Shoma chee tarjee meedeen?

Leyla: So after the waitress has been gone for a minute, she comes back and says:

Befarmayeen. Een doog, een ham ab bedooneh yakh.

Leyla: Befarmayeen in this case means ‘here you go’. So befarmayeen, een doogh, een ham ba bedooneh yakh. What does all this mean Matt?

Matt: Here you go, here’s doogh and here’s water without ice.

Leyla: Exactly perfect. Let’s say the full thing. Befarmayeen. Een doogh

Matt: Befarmayeen, een doogh

Leyla: Een ham ab bedooneh yakh

Matt: Een ham ab bedooneh yakh Next she says

Ghaza chee mayl dareen?

Leyla: When she wanted to ask what they wanted to drink, she asked ‘noosheedanee chee mayl dareen.’ Noosheedanee is the word for drink. So ghaza is the word for food. What does this sentence mean?

Matt: What would you like to eat? Ghaza chee mayl dareen Ghaza chee mayl dareen Next sentence:

Man hanooz nemeedooneem. Shoma chee tarjee meedeen?

Leyla: So the first sentence is man hanooz nemeedoonam. Nemeedoonam means I don’t know. Nemeedoonam

Matt: Nemeedoonam

Leyla: Hanooz means still. Hanooz

Matt: Hanooz

Leyla: So put together, it means I still don’t know. Man hanooz nemeedoonam

Matt: Man hanooz nemeedoonam

Leyla: Next,

Shoma chee tarjee meedeen?

Leyla: Tarjee is the word for prefer. Tarjee dadan is the infinitive of the verb to prefer. So it’s ‘shoma chee tarjee meedeen’

Matt: Shoma chee tarjee meedeen

Leyla: Meaning what do you prefer. So she’s asking the waitress for her recommendation. Let’s listen to the next two sentences to hear the waitresses reply:

fesenjoonemoon aaliyeh.

Pass baramoon fesenjoon beeyareen.

Leyla: So the waitress says ‘fesenjoonemoon aaliyeh.’ Fesenjoon is a very delicious Persian stew made with pomegranate paste. So fesenjoonemoon adds a possessive ending on the fesenjoon, so our fesenjoon, meaning the restaurants fesenjoon. Fesenjoonemoon aaliyeh.

Matt: Fesenjoonemoon aaliyeh.

Leyla: So our fesenjoon is great. Fesenjoonemoon aaliyeh

Matt: Fesenjoonemoon aaliyeh

Leyla: So then the patron replies:

Pass baramoon fesenjoon beeyareen.

Leyla: The word baramoon is an important one. It means ‘for us’. Baramoon

Matt: Baramoon

Leyla: Let’s go over the conjugations of this word, because it is an important one that you will use over and over again. For me is ‘baram’

Matt: Baram

Leyla: For you informal is barat

Matt: Barat

Leyla: For him or her is barash

Matt: Barash

Leyla: For us is baramoon

Matt: Baramoon

Leyla: For you formal is baratoon

Matt: Baratoon

Leyla: And for them is barashoon

Matt: Barashoon

Leyla: So then, beeyareen is bring. Baramoon fesenjoon beeyareen

Matt: Baramoon fesenjoon beeyareen

Leyla: Bring us fesenjoon. So what if you were just one person and you wanted to say bring me fesenjoon? You would say baram fesenjoon bayareen

Matt: Baram fesenjoon beeyareen.

Leyla: Or what if you are ordering for your sister, and you want to say ‘bring her fesenjoon?’ You would say ‘barash fesenjoon beeyareen.

Matt: Barash fesenjoon beeyareen.

Leyla: Next two sentences of the conversation:

Beseeyar aali.

Een ham fesenjoon. Cheeze digari baratoon biaram?

Leyla: So first the waitress says ‘beseeyar aali.’ We covered this just a few minutes ago. Matt, do you remember what it means?

Matt: It’s means very well

Leyla: Exactly. So then supposedly the waitress leaves and then comes back and says:

Matt: Een ham fesenjoon.

Leyla: Een ham fesenjoon meaning something along the lines of and here’s fesenjoon. Een ham fesenjoon

Matt: Een ham fesenjoon.

Leyla: Finally, she says Cheeze digari baratoon

Matt: biaram?

Leyla: Digari means other. Digari

Matt: Digari.

Leyla: Sometimes you will hear it pronounced as deegeyee. Deegeyee

Matt: Deegeyee

Leyla: So cheese digari baratoon biaram? Should I bring you anything else. Cheeze deegari baratoon biaram

Matt: Cheeze deegari baratoon biaram

Leyla: Ok great- now the last two sentences of the conversation.

Na, khayli mamnoon, feylan hameen khoobeh. Noosheh jan.

Leyla: Ok, so ‘na, khayli mamnoon’ means no thank you

exactly. the word ‘feylan’ we’ve learned before- it means ‘for now’. feylan

Matt: feylan

Leyla: So feylan hameen khoobeh means for now, this is good. feylan hameen khoobeh

Matt: feylan hameen khoobeh

Leyla: so the whole thing together is ‘na, khayli mamnoon. feylan hameen khoobeh’. so no thanks- for now this is fine.

And in the end, the waiter says ‘noosheh jan’ which is basically like ‘bon appetit’. Noosheh jan

Matt: noosheh jan

Leyla: And that brings us to the end of lesson 37!

Matt: Thank you so much for listening!

Leyla: As always, our bonus materials and previous lessons can be found at www.chaiandconversation.com with chai spelled CHAI.

Matt: and for now- khodahafez from leyla and beh omeedeh deedar from matt