Editions:  Austria · Denmark · France · Germany · Italy · Norway · Spain · Sweden · Switzerland

'Scum of garlic': When English translations of French menus go wrong

Share this article

'Scum of garlic': When English translations of French menus go wrong
Don't you just love traditional French cuisine? Photo: Gideon/Flickr
13:02 CET+01:00
When you don't speak much French, seeing a menu with English translations can feel like a life saver... that is until you actually read it and are left none the wiser as to what will be arriving on your plate. Here's a selection of bizarre English translations found on French menus.
When you're visiting France -- the land of haute cuisine -- you want to be sure you're making the right choice about what to eat. 
 
But while Google translate can certainly be helpful, there are situations in which it can just leave you even more confused. 
 
In this list we’ve collected together some of the funniest – and downright strangest – translations from French to English seen on French menus.
 
1. 'Nuts juice'
 
"I took this picture at a hotel in Méribel (French Alps) a few years ago," said reader Jason Havard. "Needless to say, I gave the ‘nuts juice’ a miss."
 
Sent in by reader Jason Havard

2. 'Choice of flat'

"CHOICE OF FLAT? FRENCH world-beating menu translation," writes one Twitter user.

Photo: Ingles Time!/Twitter

3. Tuck into a delicious 'piece of the butcher' at this restaurant

Or perhaps a "silly chocolate pear" is more to your taste? We've pointed to our favourites, but there's plenty more to find on the menu.  
 
Sent in by reader Wendy Bond Brookes
 
4. 'Scum of garlic'

Delicious as a saddle of lamb can be, the "scum of garlic" might not be so tempting. 

"Top tip, when you translate a French restaurant menu, ask an English speaker to check it," said Kevin Gunning on Twitter. 

Photo: Kevin Gunning/Twitter

5. Always check your translations over before you go ahead and print it on your window
 
Little known fact: goats made entirely of cheese and "campinge deer" are said to roam countryside in some parts of France. 
 
Photo: Gideon/Flickr

6. 'Back of wolf wipes virgin'...

and if that doesn't tickle your fancy you could always try the 'opposite of apples' or the 'feet packages.'

Photo: Strubacca/Twitter

7. 'Hunger steak'

You're hungry and in the mood for beef... it's time to try a 'hunger steak' (or 'skirt steak'/'hanger steak' as you're more likely to call it). 

8. 'Butchery of countryside'

It's a little vague but you never know, it could still be delicious. 

Photo: Vicky Baker/Twitter

9. 'Provencal oubreaks'

Make sure you watch out for those "outbreaks" in Provence. 

10. "Paving stone of salmon fillet"

Let's hope it comes with a hammer and chisel.

Photo: Vicky Baker/Twitter

11. Just take a look at this.

12. And this:

 
13. Oh and this just to round things off. Contact lens salad anyone?
 
 
15. And finally, can you spot the bizarre translation on this menu?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Reflections on a classic menu. Some have been forced to listen to my constant harking back to menus of the ‘60’s and 70’s in la France profonde. Simple, well executed, local. Something fresh, something preserved, something braised, something grilled, something sauced. And something seemingly lost in the fine tradition of french country cooking. Mais voilà! In Marseillan on Tuesday, at le Boulevard, there it was. A leisurely lunch, un demi du vin rosé. The only differences: no soupe du jour - and 15€ instead ff11. And excruciating modern decor in a lovely old building. Vive la France! . . . . . . #foodphotography #menu #frenchmenu #leboulevard #marseillan #harkingback #foundatlast #iphoneography #iphonephotography #shotoniphone

A post shared by James Colledge (@foodflorafaunaetc) on

 

Get notified about breaking news on The Local

Share this article

The Local is not responsible for content posted by users.
Become a Member or sign-in to leave a comment.

From our sponsors

QUIZ: Which influential Icelander are you?

Iceland may have a population of just over 330,000 people (all with equally unpronounceable names) but that doesn't stop it churning out a stream of globally-renowned people. Take our quiz to discover your Icelandic spirit animal.