Il tavolo is ‘the table’, in the sense of a piece of furniture. However if ‘the table’ is prepared for a meal, it becomes la tavola.
At home, when food is ready and you want to call your friends and family to the table to eat, you would say a tavola or è pronto in tavola. However, when calling to book a table at a restaurant, you would say vorrei prenotare un tavolo.
Listen to this nursery rhyme about what it takes to make a table:
Alesha Keene Allen is an Oxford graduate of Italian who is back in London after years spent living and working in Rome as a language teacher and PR consultant. Alesha is CEO and Italian teacher at Alesha’s Italian Masterclass, which runs group Italian immersion courses at Italian restaurants and cafes such as Nonna Rosa’s in Coulsdon, and private lessons throughout London. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or through Facebook or Twitter. Her website is www.italianmasterclass.co.uk