Drink Etiquette: How To Order Mixed Drinks At A Bar

When you are young, everything is much simpler and straightforward; when you go out drinking, you drink whatever is the cheapest or available. You don’t care about the taste, quality, or anything, as your primary goal is to get drunk. And it’s all cute and expected when you are young, and we all have to go through that phase of life. 

However, when you are a bit older, you should start paying attention to what you are drinking. Alcohol tends to have a bad reputation, and many don’t like drinking it because of bad experiences with drinks that taste awful. And why that happened, you may ask? Well, in most cases, because of low-quality alcohol or inexperienced bartenders. And that’s why you must go through a drink etiquette course before going out for drinks. 

Once you know more about the types of drinks at a bar and how to order drinks, you will have a good experience when going out. 

And drink etiquette is especially needed when ordering mixed drinks. It can make your night out better if you know how to order cocktails or worse if you don’t. 

So, if you are interested in learning more about ordering drinks at a bar and ordering cocktails, we are here to give you a crash course on that and to let you on a secret where you can find the best cocktails in Miami.

The Simplest Cocktails

What do you think are the simplest cocktails? It’s mixed drinks, cocktails made mainly of two ingredients, one alcohol, and one soft drink or juice. 

And the first rule of ordering drinks at a bar is to name the liquor and then the soft drink when ordering mixed drinks. 

If you want to drink Jack and Coke, you’ll order it like that, not vice versa, like Coke and Jack. The same goes for Vodka Red Bull or Gin and Tonic. 

It makes sense when you think about the preparation, where bartenders always pour the alcohol first and the other ingredient second. 

If you have a specific brand preference for liquours, you should name it. If you want a Gin and Tonic, and the gin to be Hendrick’s, you’ll order it like Hendrick’s Gin and Tonic. And the same applies to other mixed drinks. 

You will receive the lowest quality option available without selecting liquor when ordering a drink at a bar.

Types of Drinks at a Bar

Sometimes drink ordering can seem intense, especially if you don’t know what you want. And once you know all the possible options and types of drinks at a bar, it will be easier for you to find something you like.

Now we will share with you common types of drinks at a bar that you can encounter and explain them all to make your drink ordering easy. Once you polish your knowledge, you won’t be intimidated by drink cards and will order cocktails like a pro.

House Wine 

You’ve undoubtedly heard about house wine at some restaurant or bar you’ve visited. But what is it exactly?

Essentially, the less costly wine at the bar or restaurant is called “house wine.”

Draft or Tap Beer

And have you ever tried draft beer? It can also be called on tap or draught.

Beer pulled from a metal barrel, or keg, is known as draft beer. You can also find many premium and high-quality craft beers on tap. And if you choose to drink draft beer, you are not compromising on its quality. Many people even prefer draft beer over bottled or canned ones.

Well Drink 

A well drink is a mixed drink composed of the bar’s least expensive spirits. That’s why we emphasized earlier that you need to specify which brand you would like if you want to avoid getting the cheapest.

Call Drink 

The opposite of a well drink is a call drink. It’s a mix made with a specific liquor you requested.

Premium Drink

A premium drink is similar to a call drink, but it’s premium if made with the most expensive liquor. Sometimes it’s also called a top-shelf drink. 

Ordering Drinks at a Bar – How to Order Drinks Easily

Many situations can confuse a guest in a bar and make them feel uncomfortable. And most common is the lack of knowledge regarding specific bar lingo, making drink ordering hard.

Let’s move on to the bar vocabulary when it comes to ordering drinks made in a specific way. Here you’ll learn what every expression means, and you’ll be able to order cocktails easily.


If you want your drink to be cold, but it’s usually not served with ice, like a tequila shot, you can request it to be chilled. It’s done by shaking it with a bit of ice and serving it without it. Every chilled drink will have a bit of water, but nothing too dramatic. It’s still better than adding an ice cube to the glass. 


You’ve probably heard about a Dirty Martini, but what is it? It’s a martini with a splash of olive juice in it. It may sound strange, but it’s good; you should try it. 


If someone offers you a dry martini, it can be with gin or vodka, and in it also goes dry vermouth. 


If you order a frozen drink, it won’t come frozen literally. It will be blended with ice. So you would get something like an alcoholic smoothie. 

The most common drinks served this way are Frozen Margaritas and Daiquiri. And if you don’t like that, order a regular margarita or daiquiri. 


Neat refers to being served in a traditional glass without ice. It is utilized when ordering a single alcoholic beverage. And it’s never done in a shot glass.

On the Rocks 

On the rocks is the opposite of neat. It’s a drink served with ice, again in an old-fashioned glass.


Tall indicates a larger glass. The exact amount of alcohol is included in a tall drink, but there is often also extra juice or soda added. For example, if you don’t want your drink to be strong, you can order it to be tall. A regular Gin and Tonic is less potent when made tall.

With a Twist

This phrase refers to giving the beverage a twist—typically a lemon twist.

With Salt

This signifies sprinkling salt on a glass rim.

The Best Drinks in Miami

Do you feel ready to hit the bar now you’ve learned how to properly order the things you like and use the specific terminology many cocktails aficionados use? 

Hopefully, you are, and you will have an incredible experience the next time you order a tasty drink. 

And if you need help figuring out where to start, stop by Stubborn Seed to sample our fantastic cocktail menu and outstanding Michelin-starred cuisine. Or you can call us today and book your reservation for an exceptional experience.