How to Order Beer at a Bar [Step-by-Step]

How to Order Beer

Let’s be honest: walking into a bar can be intimidating sometimes. But there’s no need to fear! Ordering beer doesn’t have to be complicated or stressful. 

Knowing the appropriate way to order a beer makes you avoid having a rookie-like appearance. After all, nothing is worse than being that person who has no idea how to order a brew and makes everyone behind the bar cringe with their lack of knowledge.

Don’t worry at all; we have got your back! We will guide you through ordering a beer at a bar with poise. We’ll provide guidance to ensure you achieve the ideal drink you have been wanting. Let’s get started!

Step 1: Choose Your Bar

First, you need to select a bar before ordering your beer. Bars come in different types with unique atmospheres and experiences. For Example, a sports bar could be a great choice if you’re seeking a location to view the vital match or keep in touch with friends. Or, if you’re attending a party or social gathering, an area might be set up for serving beer and wine.

Either way, once you’ve chosen your bar, it’s time to move on to step two: ordering the beer! Before you order, learn standard bar terms to communicate your request quickly and accurately. For instance, what do terms like “draught” or “draft” mean? Knowing this will ensure your beer is served as quickly (and cheerfully) as possible.

Step 2: Look at the Menu

Next up, check out the bar’s menu. You’ll likely see a vast selection of beer, from ales to lagers, stouts to malts, and even hard seltzers. Knowing the difference between each type of brew helps you decide before you order!

Make sure you notice how much you’re getting with each drink. Draft beers are usually served in 12-ounce glasses; bottles often hold 11.2 ounces, and cans can range from 8 to 16 ounces. When ordering multiple drinks, consider how much alcohol you’re getting—that can affect your night if you’re not paying attention!

Finally, know standard bar terminology when talking to your bartender or server if you want something specific. Saying “unfiltered Wheat Ale” might be easier than saying “Weissbier mit Hefe” when ordering at a German bar or restaurant. That way, everyone can understand and give you precisely what you want!

Step 3: Ask for Recommendations

Most bars will have staff willing to give you a few good suggestions. Ask them what their favorite beers on tap and bottles are—they’ll know the best seasonal choices and which beers pair best with certain dishes. If you’re feeling brave, ask them which is their favorite beer!

If you need guidance, ordering a flight is a great option. Flight servings are typically four beers served in small glasses that let you sample each. If you have a favorite beer, you can keep ordering it throughout your game of darts or billiards with friends. This saves time and is more convenient.

Also, keep an eye open for chalkboards and other signs featuring mouthwatering offers that can be used to advertise drinks, such as happy hours and recommendations for pitchers of beer or discounts on popular ales. These signs can make all the difference in your overall experience!

Step 4: Order Your Beer

It’s time to order your beer! To choose the right one, check the tap handles at the bar. Bars often have seasonal and rotating beers, so see what’s available. Once you’ve decided, inform your bartender.

Most bartenders will use inventory usage calculations to determine how much of each type of beer they need to ensure there’s enough for everyone. Pick another brew or go for something else if your desired beer isn’t available.

Once your order is in place, it’s time for the best part: pouring your beer! Ensure the glass is at a 45-degree angle when running, and wait until the foamy head reaches about one inch from the top—then it’s ready for drinking!

Step 5: Pay for Your Beer

At this point, you must pay for the beer that you have requested.

Most bars accept cash and cards, so you can use either to pay.

When using cash, the bartender will likely count out your change and place it on the counter.

If you’re paying by card or mobile payment, the bartender will likely swipe your card or ask you to scan your device.

If your tab is running up as you order more drinks, don’t be surprised if the bartender asks for payment before bringing out all of your glasses so that they can get paid first.

Be sure to track how many drinks you’ve ordered and the total amount owed – this is usually noted on a paper copy or a digital tablet in front of you.

Step 6: Enjoy Your Beer

Finally – you have your beer in hand! But, before you take that first sip, take a moment to appreciate the sight of the freshly poured brew. It’s a beer-lovers version of ‘savor the moment’!

Now, it’s time to drink up and enjoy the flavor and texture of your carefully chosen beer. If you followed steps 1–5 correctly, you should be left with a lovely pour of beer, full of taste and aroma.

Use this time to appreciate all that went into creating this tasty beverage – from when the barley was harvested to when it was malted and incorporated into a full-flavored beer recipe. You’ll get hints of citrus and bready malt flavor in an American pale ale or crisp hop bitterness in an IPA; the taste possibilities are endless!

At any rate, however, take time now to savor your beer before starting the process again on your next visit. Enjoy!


There you have it! Now you learn how to order a beer at a bar like a pro. Taking time to evaluate the tap selection and inquire about the bar staff’s suggestions can assist you in identifying a beer you enjoy. It also reflects your eagerness to learn more about beer and converse pleasantly with fellow patrons.

Whether you’re a craft beer enthusiast or enjoy the occasional cold one, knowing the basics of ordering a beer at a bar is always a good idea. So the next time you find yourself in a bar, remember this guide’s tips and get the perfect pint!

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