ae-aaec [traditional, general Chinese]
Gong Xi Fa Cai! [Mandarin]
Gong Hey Fat Choy! [Cantonese]
Happy Chinese New Year! [this is English]
Alright, so the translation to English is actually, “Congratulations for becoming rich,” but that’s still a very nice thing to say to someone. Today is Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival and Lunar New Year. This year happens to be the Year of the Monkey.
Decorate with red lanterns, red paper-cuts (designs cut from paper), and the “luck” character, also known as “Fu.” Tradition states that you should set off firecrackers to frighten and drive off evil spirits. Of course, you should be careful to not drive away your guests so be careful with this one. Chinese New Year traditions include family gatherings, so encourage your guests to come to your bar in groups; after all, your bar is your home and your loyal guests are like family. You and your employees should also wear new clothes (bonus points if the clothes are bright colors, particularly red).
There are also things that you should not do on Chinese New Year. First, don’t do, give or buy 4 of anything. Why? Because the word “four” sounds like the word “death.” Obviously this can make purchasing for your bar and filling guests’ orders difficult so you’ll have to decide how much you want to adhere to this specific tradition. Nobody is should wear the traditional colors of mourning (white or black), beg, curse, use negative language, talk about ghosts, speak about death, or discuss the past year if they want to have a lucky, prosperous and overall un-doomed 2016. People are encouraged to avoid using sharp objects for a few days but since that can make prepping garnishes and serving cocktails and beer hard, you may want to pretend you didn't just read that.
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Here are 4 Year of the Monkey themed cocktails you can use to wow your Chinese New Year guests. Cheers, gan bei and gom bui!
The Brass Monkey is as simple to make as pouring scotch over ice.
Your guests are sure to find the Ginger Monkey refreshing.
A creative play on the classic mojito, the Monkey Mojito is made with Monkey Shoulder.
The Monkey Jam Sour is as delicious as it is fun to say.