Podcasts Joshua David Stein Variety Hour...Half Hour

What Menus Really Tell Us

Episode: 14

This week on the Joshua David Stein Variety Hour… Half Hour, host Joshua David Stein is talking communication in restaurants. Welcoming Dan Jurafsky, Professor and Chair of Linguistics at Stanford University, who also writes and teaches about the language of food, he and Joshua kick off the segment discussing wordings in popular menus. Author of the book “The Language of Food: A Linguist Reads the Menu,” Dan points out the subtle meanings hidden in filler words like “rich” and “crispy,” and zeroes in on the metaphors and storytelling tropes patrons rely on in restaurant reviews. In the second half of the show, guitarist Richard Miller joins Joshua in studio playing some traditional Brazilian music via his nylon string guitar and explains some of the theory behind the music. This program was brought to you by Whole Foods Market.

 

 

“The cheaper the restaurant, the more they use the word ‘you’ or words related to choice.” [3:00]

“If you just measure out the length of the word in letters and say ‘how long is the average word on this menu,’ you can predict the price of an individual dish on the menu.” [10:45]

Dan Jurafsky on the Joshua Davis Stein Variety Hour… Half Hour

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