Few experiences are more awkward than having to repeatedly ask a server to explain an entrée or appetizer at dinner. In 2016, as the country’s taste continues to evolve, with chefs incorporating plates from an increasingly long list of cultures and culinary backgrounds, there’s a pressure to appear worldly and well-traveled at all times. Still, according to a recent survey conducted by Harris Poll, 56 percent of restaurant-goers say an unfamiliar ingredient will ruin their dining experience, and 29 percent claim menus are more confusing than they need to be.
Luckily, the online reservation service OpenTable recently developed a “Menu Jargon Decoder” to help patrons better understand what they’re ordering each night.
“With chefs continuing to scour the globe for unique dish ingredients and cookbooks to revive forgotten techniques, it is understandable that many diners may be confounded by certain terms on a menu,” Caroline Potter, OpenTable's chief dining officer, officer said in a statement. “While two-thirds of diners aren’t embarrassed by their confusion and are typically happy to ask their server for a little guidance, with all the passion and energy that chefs and restaurateurs put into the creation of their menus, they should be aware that one in five diners simply won’t order a menu item with a description they don’t understand."
From savory Japanese pancakes to cured Italian pork, here are the ten most commonly confounding dishes to American diners.