save some dinner / keep some dinner / reserve some dinner

< Previous | Next >

ridgemao

Senior Member
Chinese - Mandarin
Hello:

1. We’ll save some dinner for you if you’re late.
2. We’ll keep some dinner for you if you’re late.
3. We’ll reserve some dinner for you if you’re late.

In my opinion, "reserve" is correct but too formal.

The difference between "save" and "keep" is:
"keep" sounds as if we need to keep the dinner from someone else, so they can't take your dinner away.
"save" means we won't eat too much, so there will be some food left for you(no one else will take your dinner away).

Am I correct? Thank you.
 
  • The Newt

    Senior Member
    English - US
    "Save" implies both that you will leave some uneaten and that you will keep it for the other person to eat later, and that is the best choice. "Keep" is similar but less idiomatic in this context. "Reserve" is not correct here.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    I would 'keep' some dinner for you if I expected you to arrive just a bit late. Your dinner would either be in the original serving dishes or perhaps on a plate in the oven.
    I would 'save' some dinner for you if I expected you to arrive much later, or perhaps not at all. Your dinner would have been transferred to appropriate containers and would be in the fridge.

    The term 'reserve' is not natural, for me.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top