3. How to order at a bar

What’s the difference between ordering at a bar and a restaurant? This greeting from the bartender:


¿Qué te pongo?


What can I get you?

The verb in question is the multi-versatile, therefore, multi-useful:



The main meanings are: “to put”, “to pour”, and “to place”, followed by “to get”, “to make”, and “to bring”.

en presente

present conjugation

present conjugation

Otro verbo irregular para aprender de memoria.

Although in a different way to querer
Y otra diferencia:

is often used in the imperative form to make requests.

But don’t jump ahead yet! Look down⇓

¡Información importante!


If you want to begin an order with, “I was wondering…”, “Could you…”, or “Would you possibly mind…” Don’t. In fact imagine, expressions like these don’t exist in Spanish (even if they do).

¿Por qué? (Why)? Porque (because) Spanish is a much more direct language when it comes to personal interactions. “Por favor” (please) isn’t the magic word, but you can use it, if you so desire. Locals might think you’re a bit needy, because it’s usually only used as in, “Pretty pleeeeeeease!” or “Please, please, please! (no more)”



Remember. No formal imperative or plural in this lesson so you can focus on the most common use of the imperative: 2nd person  (you sing, informal).

Also, a reminder, use the correct pronunciation of the “-O” and the rest of the vowels, when you read examples.

'Poner' en imperativo

  • Ponme un vino tinto
  • Ponnos cafés
  • Ponle un zumo
  • Ponle un refresco


  • Pour me a red wine; Pour a red wine for me
  • Pour us coffees; Pour coffees for us
  • Pour him a juice; Pour a juice for him
  • Pour her a soft drink; Pour a soft drink for him

Ahora el imperativo negativo de “poner” (Don’t pour, put, place…)


  • No me ponga más vodka. Estoy borracho.
  • No nos pongan más cacahuetes. Estamos llenos.
  • No le pongáis más pan. Si no, no come la cena.


  • Don’t pour me more vodka. I’m drunk.
  • Don’t [you plr, frml] get us more peanuts. We’re full.
  • Don’t [infrml, plr you] bring him more bread. Otherwise he doesn’t eat the dinner.

Watch out

¿Ves la diferencia entre los dos?

Los acentos, imperativo positivo, tell you the vowel to stress (emphasize). Object pronouns are almost always joined to the imperative form. There are two English sentences – the first is the most common; the second, the most grammatically correct.

Imperativo negativo. The object pronouns – “me” (me) & “nos” (us) – go before the verb. This a general rule of Spanish syntax. It’s a bit counter-intuitive, so make sure to check out the grammar point and our first game: Paco Says.

Excepciones: the imperative in the positive sense (like above), after the infinitive and gerund, or a preposition. Check out the lesson: “Making requests in Spanish” to see more about this after you’ve read the aforementioned grammar point.


[WpProQuiz 8]



Sugerencia de Paco. La próxima vez que veas un vídeo, cuenta cuántas veces oyes “poner” (en imperativo) y “querer” (en presente).


A suggestion from Paco. The next time you watch video, count how many times you hear “poner” (in the imperative) y “querer” in the present.

themed lesson 3

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