As most travelers know, many friendships are forged over a drink. Here’s a few toasts that will keep you covered no matter where you go.
Skål – This word comes from the old Norse word for ‘bowl’ and is now used across all Scandinavian countries to toast. Contrary to some beliefs, there is no relation to the word ‘skull’ but rather to the word ‘scale’.Prost – This German toast comes from the Latin word ‘prosit’ which wishes “that it be good!” As always a good focus on the drink at hand just be certain your beer selection is worthy of German culture. Maintain eye-contact from the toast’s start to its finish.
Salud – To your health everywhere that Spanish is spoken. To make things nice and easy French, Portuguese and Italian speakers say Santé, Saúde and Salute respectively. All come from the Latin ‘sal?s’ meaning ‘health’.
Gan bei – The Chinese will command you to ‘dry the cup’ or ‘drink it all.’ Etiquette is important in China though so expect the host to be the first to toast. (Gan Bei is Mandarin and not all of China uses Mandarin. The Cantonese equivalent, another dialect westerners are likely to encounter, is Gom Bui!).
Nostrovia – This Russian toast, also ‘to health’ is actually a misspelling of Na zdorovje. The best part about this toast is that it works not only in Russian but across most of the Slavic world and even in Polish. Wait for the host to offer the first toast before even touching your food!
L’chaim – L’chaim, l’chaim, to LIFE. Everything in Judaism is done to life and drinking is no exception. While you’re at it, a big ‘Mazel Tov’ or congratulations may be in order as well!
Kampai – Like the Chinese version of cheers, this Japanese version also refers to an empty cup. Rather than a command though think of it as a noun – empty cup. To some this might still be a command but to some ‘zen-like’ individuals it is a toast to all that you have to learn in order to fill your cup of life. Whatever you do, make sure the ‘Kampai’ has finished before you take your first sip!
Did you know that we’re Glenfiddich Explorers? You can catch this and many of our other lists on their website!