A colloquial expression to describe the last round of beers before leaving a bar
The word comes from the Portuguese word saída (exit). Although it initially didn’t mean “the last drink in a bar,” the idea is pretty much the same. According to the Michaelis dictionary of the Brazilian Portuguese language, the term saideira used to mean the last dance of a ball.
On this Ash Wednesday, Brazilians are trying to profit from a Carnival saideira, i.e. that last parade before getting back to real life.
A drinking tradition
From the dirty boteco to the fancy wine bars, every Brazilian waiter must field the same question: “Can you bring us a free saideira?” Of course, the more expensive the bill, the more likely it is that the request will come true.
A few years ago, a bar from São Paulo institutionalized the saideira by creating a membership card for customers. For every five beers consumed, the table got one free. But the bar had a very strict rule: saideiras are not cumulative, and must be consumed on the very same day.
In the south of Minas Gerais, where I come from, it is more than a tradition. In fact, it’s now a superstition. You can’t leave a table without having a saideira – regardless of whether or not it’s free. Not officially asking for that last beer brings bad luck.