How to Order Food and Drinks in Brazilian Portuguese

In this post, I’ll show you how to really order food and drinks in Brazilian Portuguese. 

You’ll learn the most common phrases and structures that Brazilians use, so that you can sound natural and confident when ordering food and drinks in Brazilian Portuguese.

The first thing we need to be aware  of is that Brazilians don’t use the direct translation of I would like…, which is Eu gostaria… 

Neither do they use the direct translation of Can I have…? which is Posso ter…?

So, let’s see four ways to order food and drinks, these are not the only ones, there are, of course other structures that you can use, but these are my top 4.

Let’s start our count down

4. Um/uma _____, por favor.

The easiest ways to order food and drinks in Brazilian Portuguese is to just say how many units of the item you want and then the item’s name.

For example,

– Um café, por favor. / – One coffee, please.

The only thing you need to be aware of is that the number 1 has a masculine and a feminine form. Here, café is a masculine noun, so we have to say um. If the thing you’re ordering is a feminine noun, for example, a beer, cerveja, you need the feminine form of the number one, which is uma.

– Uma cerveja, por favor. / – One beer, please.

The same applies to the number two:

– Dois cafés, por favor. / – Two coffees, please.

– Duas cervejas, por favor. / – Two beeers, please.

 

3. trazer

The verb trazer means to bring.

– Me traz um café, por favor. / – Bring me a coffee, please.

Here you need the object pronoun me,

bring meme traz

2. ver

The verb ver means to see.

So, what we can say is

– Me vê um café, por favor?

Literally, – See me a coffee, please?

Here again you need the direct object me.

This is a very common way of ordering food and drinks in Brazilian Portuguese as well.

1. querer

This is probably the most used structure when ordering food and drinks, with the verb querer.

The verb querer means to want.

I want… = Eu quero…

We all know that in English it can sound quite rude if you say I want, but in Brazil is perfectly fine!

– Eu quero um café, por favor. / – I want a coffee, please.

– Eu quero uma cerveja, por favor. / – I want a beer, please.

Brazilians show politeness by using a friendly intonation, and by adding por favor at the end. Although, it’s quite common for Brazilians to not actually say  por favor  because they’ve already showed they’re being polite by the intonation, and I know that for people who are learning the language that can be quite tricky – to get the intonation just right – so I always recommend students to always add por favor when ordering food and drinks in Brazilian Portuguese.

Now let’s see some variations, using the verb querer:

– Eu vou querer um café, por favor. / Lit. – I’m going to want a coffee, please.

– Eu vou querer uma cerveja, por favor. / Lit.I’m going to want a beer, please.

Here, we’re using the immediate future structure.

You can also use the pretérito imperfeito:

– Eu queria um café, por favor. / Lit. – I wanted a coffee, please.

– Eu queria uma cerveja, por favor. / Lit. – I wanted a beer, please.

 

Now that you know how to order food and drinks in Brazilian Portuguese, try these posts:

5 Must-Know Brazilian Portuguese Words and Phrases

How to say Get Out! in Brazilian Portuguese

Essential Phrases in Brazilian Portuguese

 

 

 

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