American Bar Terms Translated to English

It can be hard to keep up with the different bar terminology that is used in not only our own country but by those across the pond. I thought it would be helpful to take a look at some American bar terms and translate them for you all.

To start with:


1 Oz = 30ml (Technically 29.5)

0.75 Oz = 22ml

0.25 Oz = 7.5ml (Technically 7.39)

1 Cup = 240ml

I know it looks like i’m teaching you how to suck eggs, but sometimes it’s really good to have a point of reference.

Now let’s focus on the American Bar Terms that you may or may not have heard before and what they mean in each country.



American: House Pour.

English: The start to a longwinded story


American: A non alcoholic drink that accompanies an alcoholic drink.

English: The person who shifts everything and cleans up the vomit.

Call Drink

American: The process of a customer naming specifics about their drink E.g. Jack Daniels & Coke, Bacardi & Coke.

English: When you’ve gotten too drunk and try to get your drink’s phone number.

Super Call

American: When a customer requests the expensive stuff.

English: Last ditch attempt at getting laid that pays off.


American: A shot that is equivalent to 1 oz.

English: A birthday present for 16 year old Essex girls.


American:  A drink served without its rim E.g. Margarita with no salt.

English: A not so good idea that tiki bartenders employ regularly.

Bartender’s Handshake

American:  A shot of Fernet Branca.

English: A desperate plea to get free drinks.

Staff Meeting

American: All staff gather for shots at impromptu times.

English: At least one person is getting fired.


American: A wine bottle with a leaky cork.

English: An emotional customer/bartender.


American: A “non-derogatory” racist term for Black People (seriously, that’s real, that exists).

English: People we call Americans because who can tell the difference?


American: A term to describe Europeans who stereotypically don’t tip or tip very little, have bad hair or brand identity disease.

English: That show on Channel 4 that was basically just free porn but was also proper weird.


American: Add vodka.

English: Shut the fuck up.

Up Against The Wall

American: Ordering a drink “Up Against The Wall” means: Add Galliano.

English: It’s difficult to not make an obvious sex pun.


American: A Heineken (named after the legendary Freddy Heineken who died in 2002).

English:  An alternative name for Andrew.


American: When you give your close friend a free beer, a free shot, a free cocktail, a free bottle of wine, a free keg and $200 because they bought you a pizza that one time, but then they give it all back, spit in your face, throw your mother on the floor, kick her in the shins and then ask for two free beers, two free shots, two free cocktails, two free bottles of wine, two free kegs, $400 and freedom of movement for their own family but not yours because that pizza was the best damn pizza in the world and they’re sick of you taking advantage of them and telling them what they can and can’t drink when they weren’t even the ones who hired you.

English: This.


American: Waking up in the morning with the biggest feeling of regret and shame for what you’ve just woken up to. Also: A Four Year Hangover.

English: Doing a fart.

Hopefully you’ve gained an insight into how our bartending cultures differ. Have a good day.

Follow Us: @CheapestShot

IMG: Nicolas Raymond | flikr

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s