Don’t you just hate it when you can’t read menus? You’re left adrift in a sea of incomprehension, but you’ve still got your pride dammit, so decide to courageously forge ahead anyway when the waiter comes over, inevitably ordering something horrendous and bad for you, before compounding the error by actually eating it. Whatever it is about the French, they are particular candidates for this. You seem to encounter more menus singularly written in French than any other language (although the Italians aren’t far behind). But now flip the situation. You’re the French person, and you’re staring at an English menu. Similar incomprehension. The inconvenience goes both ways, pal, and it’s about time someone remedied this. Well, they already have, at least for one way traffic. It’s called Le Menu Dit and it’s available now on iOS.
We previously reviewed Le Menu Dit back in January, but it’s gone through an upgrade and revamp since then so we’d thought we’d take the time to revisit. Because who doesn’t love going to France? The basic premise of the app remains the same; you snap a shot of an (subjectively) incomprehensible menu, and Le Menu Dit automatically translates it from English to French. Though it may seem a particularly niche of translation, many French people do have trouble with English menus, and this app will be on hand for them in whatever English-speaking country they find themselves in, from America to Australia.
The app has some major pros. It translates each line directly below the English, allowing you to point to what you want if you don’t care to chance a pronunciation. It’s also available offline, which means you can use it on planes, trains and automobiles, as well as in the village of Framlingham which has a population of three thousand and probably doesn’t score very highly on the ol’ reliable wifi scale. The only time you have to have an internet connection is when you initially download the app, so best to do that in the sunny suburbs of gay Paris, as opposed to frantically attempting to connect in Framlingham village green.
You can also try it three times absolutely free. And that doesn’t mean three translations; it just means you have to open the app each time. So you won’t have to order one of the first three things on the menu when you’re trying it on the cheap. It’s a reliable, easy-to-use app which even gives you guidelines as to where it might not work so well (handwriting, occasional imperfect grammar, etc.). However, it does work well with glares or flashes, so you needn’t worry about snapping the perfect shot of your particular menu. If you’re a French person who’s reading this review through a translator, or if you’re planning on hosting French guests for business or pleasure in the near future, pick Le Menu Dit up and make life a little easier on yourself.
Get ordering at the App Store today!