"There is quite a lot of salt, isn't there?"
I put "しお が おおい です ね" but it was marked wrong. Would this not work as a sentence? What exactly does けっこう mean and why is it used in this translation?
It's used to ask for agreement on the matter. It's equivalent to "isn't it?" in English.
why is it desu instead of arimasu?
nevermind, i've come to the conclusion that it's desu, because, rather than the sentence being "there is quite a lot..." it is more literally like, "the salt is in big amount"
There is no "wa" (は), "ga" (が) is used to mark salt (しお / 塩) as the subject of the sentence. It shows that salt specifically is what there is quite a lot of.
I think it could be because that translates to "There is a lot of it, the salt." Technically correct, but sounds unnatural。
とても is an intensifier, while けつこう is a softener.
多い - a lot
とても多い - really a lot (intensified)
けっこう多い - quite a lot (softened)
けっこう seems to only behave as quite when used with a positive describer, is that accurate? So you could say けっこう美味しいです for quite delicious (btw that's the American quite for the British folks out there, meaning basically the opposite of the British connotation)、but you couldn't say けっこう美味しくない for quite bad. Anyone know if that's true?