English Listening Exercises for B1 – Eating out

1. Complete the labels for the pictures with the words below. There are three extra words.

curry      pie      pudding      risotto      salad      sandwich      soup      stew      stir-fry




egg ________


prawn ________


cherry ________


vegetable ________


chicken ________

Show answers

1 risotto   2 salad   3 stir-fry   4 pie   5 curry   6 soup

2. Think about dishes which are popular in your country. Write down:

two types of curry or stew.

________, __________________

two types of salad or sandwich.

________, __________________

two types of soup or pie.

________, __________________

Show answers

your own answers

Listening Strategy

In a listening task, you sometimes need to identify the context of a conversation. The context is implied, not started, so you have to listen for clues. The information you need may be:

when the conversation is taking place.

where it is taking place.

why the conversation is taking place.

who is speaking.

3. Read the Listening Strategy. Then listen and circle the correct answer.

shortly afterbefore dinner

b  insideoutside a restaurant

They might have the wrong dayrestaurant .

a woman and her fatherson

Show answers

a before   b outside   c restaurant   d father


Woman I think we’re early. Is anyone else there?

Man We aren’t early. The invitation said dinner at 8.00. It’s eight o’clock now.

But I can’t see anyone we know in there. Look through the window. It’s empty.

Hang on. Have you got the invitation with you?

No, but I’m sure it said 8 o’clock on Friday 15th.

I know. But did it say Marco’s Italian or Mario’s Italian restaurant?

Hmm. Good question. This is Mario’s.

Yes. They might be at Marco’s. I’ll phone Harry and check.

OK, Dad. Good idea.

4. Listen to two short dialogues. Read the questions about context and circle the correct answers.

Dialogue 1

Who is the woman talking to?

a waiter

the man she’s having dinner with

a man at the next table

Why is the woman unhappy with her food?

It isn’t what she ordered.

It doesn’t look very tasty.

She can’t eat it.

Dialogue 2

Where is the conversation taking place?

a   at home

in a restaurant

c   in the town centre

What time is it, approximately?

a   7 p.m.

9 p.m.

c   11 p.m.

Show answers

1 b   2 c   3 a   4



Man Great. Here comes our food. It looks delicious.

Woman I don’t want this. It’s got chicken in it.

M Don’t you like chicken?

W I’m a vegetarian! I don’t eat meat at all.

M Oh, I see. Why did you order it then?

W I didn’t read the menu properly. I thought it was a mushroom pie – but it’s chicken and mushroom.

M Oh dear. Well, I suppose ___

W ___ we can swap?

M No. I don’t like mushrooms. I was going to say, I suppose you can call the waiter back and order something different.

W Yeah, right. Thanks. OK.


Man What’s for dinner?

Woman I don’t know. We haven’t got anything in the house. Shall I order a pizza?

M I don’t fancy pizza. Let’s go out.

W But we’ve just got in ___ and it’s late.

M We could go to the Indian restaurant in the town centre. Come on, it’s only five minutes’ walk.

W OK. I quite fancy a curry, actually. Do we need to book?

M Probably not. They usually get busy after 9 p.m., but that gives us a couple of hours.

W OK, come on then. Let’s go. I’m starving!

5. Complete the useful phrases with the words below.

bit      nothing      pretty      real      up      world

a ________. special

a ________. let-down

_____. special

_____. average

not ________. to standard

out of this ________.

Show answers

1 bit   2 real   3 nothing   4 pretty   5 up   6 world

6. Listen to a dialogue between two friends. Check your answers to exercise 5.

7. Listen again. For each questions, write the correct speaker: Tom (T) or Zoë (Z).

Which person ___

1   is planning to book a restaurant?

2   can’t remember last year’s meal?

3   always checks online reviews for restaurants?

4   recommended an Italian restaurant?

5   is going to ask about a special diet?

Show answers

1 Z   2 T   3 T   4 T   5 Z


Tom Hi, Zoe. Have you booked a restaurant for next Saturday?

Zoe Not yet. I can’t decide where to go. I want it to be a bit special because it’s dad’s birthday.

T Where did you go last year?

Z To the Royal Hotel. It was a real let-down.

T Was it? Oh dear.

Z You were there, Tom! Have you forgotten?

T Er ___ yes. I guess so.

Z Well, I don’t blame you. It was nothing special. In fact, the whole evening was pretty average. So this year really has to be better.

T Have you looked at any reviews online?

Z No. I never look at restaurant reviews.

T Oh, I do. For example, a month ago, mum booked an expensive French restaurant for a special meal with friends. I looked online and everyone said the food was not up to standard.

Z So did you warn your mum?

T Yes, I did ___ and she cancelled. She ended up booking the Italian restaurant near the park – after I’d read the reviews and told her she should book it!

Z And was it OK?

T It was great, she said. Much cheaper ___ and the food was out of this world!

Z Well why I don’t I book that restaurant for next Saturday?

T I’m not sure. Doesn’t your dad have a gluten-free diet?

Z Yes, he does. So I suppose an Italian restaurant isn’t a great idea.

T No. Pizzas, pasta ___ they contain wheat.

Z But lot of restaurants have gluten-free options too. Why don’t I call and find out?

T That’s a good idea. It’s definitely the best restaurant in town.

Z OK, I’ll call now. Can you find the number?

T Sure. I’ll look online.

Extra exercises


Read the statements carefully before you listen, paying close attention to key words in order to predict what you are going to hear. Think about who might be speaking, and what feeling or idea they might be expressing.

1. Read the Strategy. Then underline the key words in statements 1-3.

1 Jim’s grandparents were ambitious for their children.

2 Jim’s grandparents both attended university.

3 Jim’s mother disappointed her parents.

Show answers

1 grandparents, ambitious, their children

2 grandparents, both, university

3 mother, disappointed, parents

2. Read the extract from a recording. Are the statements in exercise 1 true (T) or false (F)?


mum’s parents wanted a different life for their children. grandparents didn’t finish school, but they worked very hard so mum could go to university. I’m not sure mum really wanted to be a lawyer, but she knew it would thrill her parents, so she just got on with it.

Show answers

1 T   2 F   3 F

3. Listen to two young people talking about their family history. You will hear the recording twice. Are the statements true (T) or false (F)?

1 Lila has no memory of moving to the UK.

2 Lila’s mother made the decision to move to the UK.

3 Most of Tim’s family came to the UK from Norway.

4 Tim’s father grew up in the countryside.

5 Tim admires his father’s achievements.

Show answers

1 T   2 F   3 F   4 T   5 T


Tim You weren’t born in the UK, were you, Lila?

Lila No, Tim, but I was only six months old when family emigrated here from the Ukraine. So I don’t remember anything about it. Of course I’ve been there many times, but only Britain feels like home.

What made your family come here? That’s a big change!

Actually, dad went to university in London, and then he went back and taught at a school in Kiev. He and mum got married and started a family. But dad really wanted to come to the UK − and mum didn’t really mind − so we moved here.

T family on mother’s side came from abroad as well, but it’s so long ago that no one really knows why they came here.

L Where did they come from?

T great-grandparents on mother’s side came from Norway. great-grandad made musical instruments like violins, and we guess he came here to start a business in London.

Was he successful?

Yes, he was. There’s still a shop in the East End with his name on it, and it’s quite well known.

What about your father’s family? Were they immigrants as well?

No, not at all. They were farmers in the south of England. dad was actually raised on a farm there, and he was the first in his family to go to university. I really look up to him. I’m particularly proud of him because he worked very hard to get where he is today.