When you think of drinking you most likely have thought of the Irish and the ever so popular Guinness. Ireland is well known for the alcohol so when you visit this beautiful country, it is important to know some of the local language so you can socialize and give a proper cheers as you raise your Guinness in celebration. Because Ireland draws in millions of tourists every year you can probably get away with whatever you currently say, but why not surprise a few people with you knowledge of the country.
Sláinte – (pronounced Slawn Cha) – The meaning of sláinte is “health” and like most countries is the more popular term to use while toasting. In Irish Gaelic they often will use this term when toasting good friends and family. Locals love to meet new people so as you go into any pub get ready to have a pint or two while listening to stories on the history of Ireland.
Other Terms You Can Say To Offer Cheers
Sláinte mhaith (pronounced slan-cha vah) – meaning “good health”
Sláinte chugat (pronounced hoo-uv) – meaning “health to you”
If you are lucky you may even have the chance to go over their during Saint Patrick’s Day and really get a taste of their culture. They don’t drink car bombs, but do love to celebrate and will cheers you for every pint of beer you drink.
Toasting in Irish
Now that we covered the traditional cheers in Irish, it’s time to talk about other toasts. Ireland is full of fun and entertainment, making it a great place to socialize and find new friends. Locals love to talk about the history of Ireland so when it is time to give a toast you need to wait for the right moment as to not interrupt any conversations.
Obama, past president of the United States, has even come to Ireland to give a cheers and toat to his ancestors. He did use the classic ‘Slainte’, but still kept it to tradition as he drank a pint of Guiness.
Drinking Cheers and Toasts
Sláinte – “to health”
Go mbeirimíd beo ar an am seo arís – “May we be alive at this same time again next year”
Céad Míle Fáilte – “One hundred thousand welcomes”
Beimid ag ól – “Let’s be drinking”
New Years and Christmas Cheers
Athbhliain faoi mhaise duit – “A prosperous New Year to you”
Happy Christmas to you -Nollaig shona dhuit
Summary of Irish Drinking Toasts
Irish toasts are an integral part of Irish culture, and a way for people to share their love and appreciation with each other. Toasting is common at social events such as weddings, parties, christenings, funerals or any gathering where drinks are served. The most popular traditional Irish toast is “Sláinte!” (pronounced SLAHN-cha) which means “good health” in Gaelic.
This phrase is often accompanied by the raising of glasses and clinking them together in a gesture of camaraderie. Other variations include: “sláinte mhaith” (good luck), “cead mile fáilte” (a hundred thousand welcomes), and “go n-éirí an bóthar leat” (may your journey be successful).
In addition to these commonly used phrases, there are also countless creative customised variations that can be used depending on the occasion or even just for fun. For example: “May we never have an argument strong enough to lead us apart”, “To absent friends” or “Here’s mud in your eye!” No matter what type of toast you choose, it’s important that everyone raise their glass before saying it—it’s considered bad luck if someone doesn’t join in!
So gather around with friends or family members and enjoy some good conversation over a few pints while celebrating life with an Irish toast!