Due to globalization, the restaurant industry just like any other industry needs to become internationalized. Food culture and different cuisines have attracted many tourists and have achieved underestimated economic benefits. However, to successfully bring food culture to the world, there are still many obstacles to be faced. The first is menu translation. The translation quality of a menu lies on how certified Chinese translation leave an excellent and deep impression on foreigners, introducing and sending cultural value effectively to the world through communication exchange.
However, menu translation is not an easy task. First, translation should confirm the type, function, and purpose of the menu. They also need to understand the ingredients used and reason for naming a dish in order to provide the appropriate English translation, using practical translation principles and methods. Menu translation is quite complicated especially when keeping it standardized. There should also be some flexibility in translation to provide substantial information and enable foreigners to experience the flavor of the dish through the menu.
Generally, there are two ways to name a dish: realistic nomenclature and ideographic nomenclature. Realistic nomenclature usually involves the dish’s ingredients, cooking methods, color and flavor, foundation or origin and other information, e.g. Chaozhou brined goose, Dongpo stewed pork. When translating these dishes, one should consider the substantive information that goes with the dish. For ideographic nomenclature, a certified Chinese translation should be familiar with the essence of a certain dish; i.e., the dish’s ingredients, cooking method, color, shape, foundation or origin, and other information, using actual experience rather than virtual or other effective translation methods.
Menu translation is a crucial part of promoting food culture. From a simple interpretation, menu translation can reflect the cultural attributes of a country or region; therefore, it is an essential part for services of the certified Chinese translation.