32 German Drinking Phrases and Party Talk

If you’re planning a trip to Germany (or Austria or Switzerland) learning some fun and useful phrases for drinking and social interactions can really spice up your language skills.

After all, it’s sometimes tricky to learn to socialize in a foreign language: You have to look beyond just knowing how to order your next beer (though we won’t neglect that either).

With these phrases, you’ll get started on German drinking phrases and party talk, expressing yourself no matter what your mood and making friends along the way. 


German Phrases for Eating and Drinking

Socializing is one of the best ways to experience authentic German, and to do that you’ll be eating and drinking with others. 

Some of the best and most expressive phrases are born from the spontaneous alchemy of language that occurs while hanging out with friends at the bar, having a night out on the town or just generally having fun.

Here are some basic ones that will come in handy.

1. Ich besorge das Bier. I’ll take care of the beer.

Here’s a pre-party phrase for offering to do your part. Don’t worry, beer is really cheap in Germany and stores known as Spätis are open 24/7 in Berlin

2. Noch ein Bier, bitte. Another beer, please.

A good one to have ready when you’ve drunk at least one beer and are still feeling thirsty (a given if you have any German blood in you!), this is probably one of the most common phrases in the language.

Though judging by the popularity of the yerba mate soda Club Mate in Berlin, “Noch ein Club Mate”  might be starting to compete.

3. Prost! — Cheers!

Whether to good health or no hangover, this what to say when making a toast. Be sure to maintain eye-contact with the person you’re clinking glasses with, as German tradition states wandering eyes will get you seven years bad luck!

4. Pass auf, dass uns niemand den Tisch wegnimmt. — Watch out, don’t let anyone take our table.

This can be really handy during crowded Oktoberfest celebrations, or at a sports bar when the national soccer team is playing.

5. Lass uns das bald wieder machen. Let’s do this again soon.

Use this one to say you loved the party and look forward to next time, or just to be polite.

6. Nicht lange schnacken, Kopf in Nacken. Stop talkin’ and start drinkin’.

Here’s one to break out if your friend’s long-winded anecdote is taking up your drinking time. 

7. Saufen bis zum Verlust der Muttersprache. Drink until you forget your mother tongue.

Some German phrases can make you sound so cultured. This one’s right at the top.

8. Ich habe einen Kater. — I’ve got a hangover.

The day after you forget your mother tongue, you’ll probably feel like saying this. Literally meaning “tomcat”, a Kater  will probably have you meowing for some food…

9. Wir brauchen Katerfrühstück. We need a hangover cure.

Literally, we need a “hangover breakfast.”

10. Ich saufe darum bin ich. I booze, therefore I am.

Descartes might have said this at Oktoberfest. Combine 50% thinking and 50% drinking, and you’re getting pretty close to the German party spirit.

11. Jetzt geht’s ab! The party starts now!

In Germany, party time is all the time, so you’ll probably be able to use this a lot in your travels.

12. Freibier für alle, sonst gibts Krawalle. Free beer for all, or else we riot.

As you’ve probably gathered, Germans are serious about their beer. If you really want to get into the party vibe, try this one out. It comes from the popular rock song “Freibier.”

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German Phrases for When the Party Goes Awry

Some non-German speakers say Goethe’s language always makes you sound angry. I totally disagree; I think German can be tremendously sweet. If your sweetness level ever goes down, however, consider some of these powerful phrases.

Some of these are obviously quite rude and should be used with caution, but they’re good to know and recognize even if you never use them. After all, drinking and parties can sometimes take a toll and cause emotions to run high.

13. Ich habe die Nase voll davon! I’m sick of it!

Literally meaning, “My nose of full of it!”, you can use this one to express that you’ve just had enough of something.

14. Lass den Quatsch!  — Knock it off!

An alternative to the above.

15. Das dauert ja ewig.  — That’s taking forever.

This one can be used to express impatience.

16. Das ist mir egal.  — I don’t care.

This one conveys indifference.

17. Hände weg.  — Hands off!

You can use this phrase if someone is invading your personal space.

18. Lass die Finger von meinem Bier!  — Keep your hands off my beer!

You can use this one for anything you don’t want someone else’s fingers on.

19. Geh dahin, wo der Pfeffer wächst. Get out of here!

This literally means “Go where the pepper grows,” and can be used when you want to be left alone. So simple, yet so to the point.

20. Halt dein Maul Dummkopf. — Shut your mouth, idiot.

This one could potentially be used if you preferred silence to (unwelcome) words.

21. Kannst du ein bisschen sensibler mit ihm umgehen? Can you be a bit more tactful/careful with him?

This one can be used if someone is being rude or lacks tact and you’d like to politely ask them to be nicer.

22. Komm mal wieder runter.  — Calm down!

This one can be useful if someone is getting too worked up to have a civilized discussion.

Miscellaneous Phrases for Having Fun and Making People Laugh

People talk about everything at parties. You might end up gossiping about people you know, engaging in some amateur philosophy or just joking around.

No matter what the topic of discussion is, German speakers have a great sense of humor. Whatever you’re trying to say, there’s likely a fun phrase to express it, sometimes involving farm animals, hairy teeth or guardian angels.

Here are a few that cover a wide range of territory.

23. Lass deine Sau raus! Let your hair down!

Literally meaning, “Let your pig come out,” this is an invitation to merrymaking.

24. Er hat Haare auf den Zähnen. — He can hold his own / He’s a tough customer.

Literally, “He has hair on his teeth,” this can be a funny way to describe a know-it-all.

25. Wer zahlt, bestimmt die Musik. Whoever pays the piper decides the tune.

There’s some easy world philosophy for you!

26. Probieren geht über Studieren. Trying is better than studying.

Sometimes trying something new or just doing it is better than thinking too hard about it!

27. Die Axt im Haus erspart den Zimmermann. An ax in the house keeps the carpenter away.

If you have the opportunity to impart home improvement wisdom, consider breaking this one out. A little less harmless than “an apple a day…” but maybe just as useful.

28. Es stinkt wie ein Bock. — It stinks like a buck.

Use this one if something (or someone) smells foul.

29. Wenn Schweine fliegen. — If pigs can fly…

The meaning here is that if pigs can fly, then anything is possible. You can use it if you hear something unbelievable.

30. Alles hat ein Ende, nur die Wurst hat zwei. Everything has one end, only sausages have two.

This one can be used to philosophize about the meaning of life and death, maybe while eating sausages. The idea here is that everything has to end, we all die, etc.

31. Sie hat eine scharfe Zunge. She has a sharp tongue.

Here’s one you can use if you happen to encounter someone with a sharp wit.

32. Fahre nie schneller, als dein Schutzengel fliegen kann! Never drive faster than your guardian angel can fly!

Here’s a handy one for being safe by discouraging a fast driver. It would make a nice bumper sticker, don’t you think?


You can learn plenty of cool vocabulary for socializing from lists like this, through language immersion and by watching current German television. Just remember that phrases won’t always be literal, or even make sense!

After all, partying and socializing isn’t all about practical details, it’s about having fun.

Knowing these phrases beforehand will make you feel less socially awkward, and make your social interactions richer and more meaningful, too!

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