How to Pronounce Bruschetta

BruschettaEvery time I order bruschetta in a restaurant and pronounce it properly (brus╦łket.ta) the server invariably says, “Oh, you mean the brushetta?” Then they look at me as if to say, “You poor, uncultured little thing.” It happened again last night.

I wouldn’t care how they pronounced it if they didn’t correct me in that annoying way. Isn’t it maddening when you pronounce something properly and someone corrects you?

Attention all restaurant servers in America and anyone else who wants to know:

“ch” in Italian is always pronounced with a hard “k” sound. (Think chianti, pinocchio, and zucchini). Being part Italian and having lived there I can guarantee you that it is not pronounced with a “sh” sound.

If you choose to pronounce it wrong that’s your choice, but please don’t correct paying customers who know the proper way to pronounce it! Don’t take my word for it. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say:

It is worth noting that in Italian, bruschetta is pronounced [brus╦łket.ta], though in English-speaking countries it is commonly mispronounced. The noun “bruschetta” is from the verb in the Roman dialect “bruscare,” meaning “to roast over coals.”

So there you have it. You snotty restaurant servers can “chiss” my ass!

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17 Comments on "How to Pronounce Bruschetta"

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I know this is an older article, but I LOVED reading it because it happens to me all the time and not only with bruschetta but with a bunch of other words – bresaola, provolone, parmiggiano being some of the most mispronounced ones – and I had to write this, regarding the last comment. Liz, you are wrong. I believe the rule you are referring to is “ci” pronounce “chee” and “sci” pronounced “she”. “ch” is pronounced k. ALWAYS. Also, italians and italian-americans are two (very) different categories of people.

I’m Italian as well, and I’m pretty sure the rule is that ch is pronounced “k” unless there is an “s” before it which changes the sound to a “she” (and that’s she, not shee)

…I’m almost positive this is the rule… but not 100%.

Think about it: Chianti, Pinocchio, zucchini… none of those have an “s” before the “ch”.

This is great … I was making bruschetta this weekend and pronouncing it correctly and my sister kept correcting me over and over with the ‘sh’ sound bruschetta. I have sent her this blog .. hee hee hee! Thank you! I am going to ask her next if she would like a Zushinni .. :-p

Thank goodness for you! I have been waging this silent battle with mispronouncers for years and have never felt like I had allies. My husband won’t even mend his pronunciation of the word based on my knowledge of the language…sheesh.

Thank you; this happens to me every time I eat out, and it irks me to no end!

This has happened to my husband as well, who is 100% Italian. I’d like to correct the server, but I am always afraid of offending him/her. Who knows what they will do to your food…

Reminds me of another one I hate. When people say “I-talian”, you know, with a long I instead of a short one. I just want to ask, “Oh, you mean from I-taly?”

I am glad that I’m not the only one who gets corrected when i say the word correctly!! Still, even IF someone pronounces a word wrong,I think that no restaurant employee should ever correct a customer! (i once worked in a French bistrot, & heard”mispronunciations” of amost every item,but just took the order, smiled, and no one’s feelings got hurt!

I KNOW! I’m a server, and we just put some bruschetta on the menu. I get in a fight every day with the cooks and so far I’m the only person in the restaurant that knows the proper way!

Same thing happened to me at Carraba’s Italian Grill, I thought the lady had some nerve epecially because I knew I was right. It drives me crazy when you work at an Italian restaurant and you can’t even pronounce the food correctly.

I almost thought it was as what it was written, pronouncing it with “ch” like c in cello…good to know! Will never get it wrong again.