The Word on the Street Is . . . Resto

Word on the StreetIf you’ve ever received a message like “meet me at the resto” and didn’t bat an eye, then congratulations! You’re a dyed-in-the-wool Montreal Anglo. For the rest of you, you can probably guess that it’s short for restaurant, and not rest stop, restroom, or leftovers (from the French les restes).

Then there’s the resto-bar, which simply means a restaurant with a watering hole on the side. For a truly American equivalent to resto-bar, bar & grill comes to mind, bringing with it images of supersize Buffalo wings and low-rent beer.

Resto by itself can be très chic, but then again, rather scuzzy. Usually the outdoor accoutrements of the joint are a dead giveaway, like that creepy one-liner, Bienvenue aux dames, which gets a whole lot creepier when you translate it literally as Welcome, ladies.

Resto presents some challenges on the translation front. Restaurant just seems to fall short of the easy, breezy nature of this punchy number.

How would you translate resto?

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