Macmillan Dictionary gives two definitions of drunch which derive from the combination of two different sets of words:

1 - a meal that combines lunch and dinner.

  • Let's eat early and have drunch this afternoon.

2 - a drink plus lunch.

  • In Barcelona there are some places offering an all you can eat drunch buffet including a drink such as bloody mary, cava or gin tonic.

while the following source appears to support the idea that drunch is more a combination of drinking and having lunch rather than a meal that combines lunch and dinner together, along the lines of the more established term brunch:

Drunch is a blend of the words “drinking” and “lunch. ” It is primarily used as a noun in place of the word “lunch.” An example is “Let’s get drunch.” It means to get drinks at lunch. However, the meaning has shifted over time. Drunch can now mean: to consume excessive quantities of alcohol at lunch, or to get drunk at lunch. An example of this usage would be: “We got so drunch, yesterday.” This definition often leads to a folk etymology, where people see the word as a blend of “drunk” and “lunch.”


Given that the two definitions are quite different and inviting someone to drunch may sound as inviting them to a round of drinks, I’d like to know:

  • Is there an established usage of drunch in one the two senses explained above or should it be used carefully to avoid possible unpleasant misunderstandings?

  • when and by whom was the term coined? Was it from one of the realities such as Masterchef, for instance?

  • OK, so there are 3 possible interpretations 1. a very late lunch, around 2-3pm 2. a very early dinner 4-6pm or 3. a drink just before lunch. I don't think reality TV shows such as Masterchef has any relevance. This appears to be business jargon.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Sep 17, 2018 at 11:21
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    I'm not making this an answer as I've done no research, but anecdotally as a native (British) English speaker I've never heard this term - my immediate interpretation was the second meaning (i.e. combining lunch with drinking). The first would never have occurred to me, and frankly seems odd even after seeing it defined (where did the 'r' come from? It's not in lunch or dinner - interference with 'brunch' is my best guess). If you mean that, I'd either explain very clearly or (preferably, imo) avoid the term entirely.
    – Chris H
    Sep 17, 2018 at 11:22
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    Dinner/lunch would surely be dunch – or, as I have always called it, lunner (also more parallel to brunch, which is the first part of the earlier meal and the last part of the later meal). I’ve never heard drunch either, and devoid of context (as when reading the title of this question), I assumed it to be a verb similar in meaning to drench, dunk, or drown. Sep 17, 2018 at 11:28
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    Also, I’d question the last bit of that Neologisms quote. It’s not a folk etymology when people think of drunch as being ‘drunk + lunch’ both in composition and meaning – it’s just a new word, made up of drunk and lunch and meaning ‘to get drunk at lunch’. Sep 17, 2018 at 11:31
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    Skeptical/incredulous users might be more forgiving if you explained in your answer how you came across this term, and cited the source. And BTW I said "it appears to be business jargon" not that it is, I can see how a businessman might invite a client for a drink (at a pub, cocktail bar or wine bar) followed by lunch. If you did hear it used at Masterchef, or Hell's Kitchen you should say so.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Sep 17, 2018 at 11:50

1 Answer 1


Time Out, London's famous guide to eating (and drinking) out; Paris edition, 2012

Let's Do Drunch

But now loafers can enjoy 'Le Drunch', a lunch-dinner hybrid, which means that partied-out Parisians can head out for curative cuisine even later on Sundays. Here are four surefire drunch joints to help dispel the Sunday afternoon blues

The blend word appeared in 1975 in the linguistics journal, Poetica. [emphasis mine]

Such are brunch for breakfast and lunch in one meal; drunch for drinks plus lunch; and dinter for dinner before or after a professional interview. In weather reports foggle means fog and drizzle; smog, smoke and fog;…

Poetica: An International Journal of Linguistic‐Literary Studies, issues 3-6.

However, it appears that the term was later popularised in Paris

Sunday mornings are for sleeping, Sunday afternoons should be for eating, misbehaving just a little bit more before going back to work and the healthy eating that comes with Monday – Friday life. Decisions, decisions…go out for dinner, go out for lunch, can’t decide? The concept of Le Drunch was a food trend to emerge from Paris. (source)

On May 3 2011, in a Belgian blog called “Life In Brussels” the meaning of the term is explained. The "fake" deletions are by the author.

While brunch is often late in the morning / early afternoon, the brunch is designed for even more lazy people who do not leave home before tea time. This is indeed a terrible contraction of dinner and lunch, the drunch is therefore from 16 hours.
(Translation by Google)

From Le Figaro January 14, 2009

Après le brunch, le « drunch ». Ou comment mixer lunch et dîner. Une tendance qui s'impose peu à peu dans les bars comme à la maison. le dimanche est en train d'émerger. Après le boom du brunch, voici le « drunch », un compromis entre lunch et d inner. On dit aussi « slunch » (souper et lunch réunis).

Google translation
After the brunch, the "drunch". Or how to mix lunch and dinner. A trend that is needed gradually in bars and at home. A new way of receiving Sunday is emerging. After the brunch boom, here is the drunch, a compromise between lunch and dinner. We also say "slunch" (dinner and lunch together).

British Blend

From a thesis entitled Separating Blends, submitted to the University of Liverpool, dated September 2003, the author Debbie Danks cites the following in the appendices

In Potter (1969) p81:

drunch - drinks + lunch
dinter - dinner + interview
Joggle -Jog + drizzle
smaze - smoke + haze

It therefore appears that drunch was originally the blending of drinks and lunch, hence justifying the presence of the letters dr, and dates back as far as 1969. Sometime in the late noughties (2000s), the term was ‘reinvented’ mimicking the already well-established expression brunch, but its semantic meaning had broadened. Today drunch includes both definitions

  1. dinner + lunch
  2. drinks + lunch

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