Food & Drink

These are the 6 best "Cheers!" in the world

To help celebrate the kickoff of his new show Chug on the National Geographic Channel (airing Monday, November 24th) and provide you with Thanksgiving table fodder that doesn’t involve pointedly asking your Dad why he brought his new wife, we asked Zane Lamprey (formerly of Three Sheets, Drinking Made Easy, etc.) to give us his favorite toasts and explain why he loves each of them uniquely. To drink success!

"Yam Seng"

Translation: “Drink success”
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
This is most fun toast I’ve ever come across. The objective is to say it as loudly as you can and for as long as possible. It brings in everyone around you and puts a smile on everyone’s face (unless you’re saying it in your Mom’s house at 3am -- sorry, Mom!).


Translation: “Cheers!”
“Bula” is the most frequently spoken word in Fiji. I haven’t confirmed this, but I think it’s more common than the word “the”. It’s how you greet people and how you toast (whether alcohol or the local kava).


Translation: “To breathe”
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Another Malaysian toast, “hirup” translates to “to breathe” -- a perfect example of why literal translations don’t always work. It’s like saying “what’s up?” to a new English speaker and they turn their gaze to the sky.



Translation: “Cheers!”
Sarawak, Malaysia
Yet another Malaysian toast. Like “Yam Seng”, it’s said for as long and as loud as possible. It's the most local toast in Malaysia, as it comes from the native Sarawak (sara-wah) culture. If I would have learned this one first, it would be my favorite!


Translation: “To your health!”
Budapest, Hungary
This is the most difficult toast I’ve learned -- but also the most rewarding. It’s pronounced “egg-uh-sheg-uh-druh”, but try remembering that after a few rounds of Hungarian pálinka!

“Ban Tai”

Translation: “To whack!”
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
As Kuala Lumpur is a cultural melting pot, like the Asian equivalent of NYC, there is a plethora of ways to toast. This toast means “to whack”, which is possibly the best way to describe what it’s like to take a shot.