buy you a drink?
(Can I) buy you a drink?
1. Would you like me to purchase you an alcoholic beverage? When used literally in this way, this offer is usually extended (at an establishment that serves alcohol) to a friend or someone with whom one is pursuing a relationship of some kind, often a romantic one. Hi, I couldn't help but noticing you from across the room. Can I buy you a drink? Hey, pal, I'd love to catch up. Buy you a drink? A: "It's been really nice talking to you. Can I buy you a drink?" B: "No, thank you. My boyfriend will be here any minute."
2. Can I make or get you a drink? In this usage, the phrase is used humorously, since the setting is not a place where alcohol is for sale. A: "Buy you a drink?" B: "Ah, I'll just have whatever kind of beer you've got in your fridge." Can I buy you a drink? That is, as long as you're OK with whatever John has stocked in his cooler. A: "Buy you a drink?" B: "Maybe just a soda—I'm not a big drinker."
See also: buy
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
(Could I) buy you a drink?
1. Lit. Could I purchase a drink for you? (An offer by one person—usually in a bar—to buy a drink for another. Then the two will drink together. Also used with can or may in place of could.) When Sally and Mary met at the agreed time in the hotel bar, Sally said to Mary, "Could I buy you a drink?"
2. Fig. Could I make you a drink? (A slightly humorous way of offering to prepare and serve someone a drink, as in one's home. Also used with can or may in place of could.) Bill: Come in, Fred. Can I buy you a drink? I've got wine and beer. Fred: Great. A beer would be fine, thanks.
See also: buy
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.