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Ordering a drink up, straight up, straight and shots - what are they exactly


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up and straight up are the same and mean a drink served in a stemmed glass without ice. Straight in a legal sense refers to American whisky that's been aged at least 2 years and is at least 51% of its base grain (corn for bourbon, rye for rye, etc), aged in new, charred american oak barrels, and I forget what else. Straight for most people I'd say is synonymous with "neat" - poured right out of the bottle, no ice, nothing. A shot is a shot...a short pour of anything neat or mixed to be drunk in one gulp. 

 

May I highly recommend BarSmarts. It's free right now and is a very good starting point

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One detail to add to Hassouni's excellent explanations: up / straight up drinks are usually stirred or shaken with ice, then strained into the glass. 

Drinks on the rocks may either be strained off of ice or "built" in the drinking glass.

Notes from the underbelly

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