Barista Meaning: Here’s What It Means and How to Use It

Wondering what the word barista means? This article will provide you with all the information you need to understand the meaning of barista.

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If you love the bitter taste of coffee or the heavenly aroma of java beans, you may want to consider a career as a barista. 

From iced coffees to hot coffees and lattes to frappes, a barista is someone that specializes in making a variety of tasty beverages that usually contain coffee. 

Interested in learning more about the word barista? This guide will provide you with everything you need to know. 

What Is the Definition of Barista?

The noun barista (pronounced buh-ris-tuh or buh-ree-stuh in English and bah-rees-tah in Italian) refers to an individual specially trained in serving and making coffee drinks, usually in a coffee bar. A barista is a master of the espresso machine — AKA, not your favorite server from your local diner pouring drip coffee. 

Generally speaking, baristas know more than how to make the ideal espresso. Baristas are also known to employ skills in frothing, foaming, and steaming milk to create a wide array of espresso-based and coffee-based drinks. 

Other skills commonly used by a trained barista include:

  • Coffee roasting
  • Latte art
  • Knowledge of numerous coffee blends
  • Making cold-brewed coffee

Are There Barista Competitions?

If you happen to be an artist with an espresso machine, a barista with a whimsical degree in latte art, or if you have been told you are the miracle worker of your local coffee house, perhaps it’s time you checked out the World Barista Championships. 

The World Barista Championships (WBC) are the Olympics for formal baristas around the globe. While they originated in Norway, they are now held in a new country every year. 

What Is the Origin of Barista?

Barista was adopted from the Italian word Barista, which refers to a bartender serving alcoholic drinks, snacks, and coffee drinks. Barista, defined as the bartender of a coffee shop, is purely an English word. 

In fact, the noun didn’t appear until 1992, when the craze for cafes and espresso bars finally hit the states — hence why the coffee giant Starbucks registered the term barista as a trendy brand name for their line of espresso coffee makers in 1997. 

What Are the Synonyms and Antonyms for Barista?

To further your understanding of the term barista, it can be helpful to learn its synonyms and antonyms. In short, synonyms are words or phrases that have nearly the same if not the same meaning, whereas antonyms are words or phrases that have an opposite meaning. 

Synonyms of barista provided by Collins English Thesaurus:

  • Bartender
  • Waitress 
  • Barmaid
  • Tea man
  • Preparer of coffee
  • Roaster
  • Barkeep 
  • Barman 
  • Tea lady

Antonyms of barista:

  • Boss
  • Manager
  • Freeholder
  • Landlord
  • Master
  • Property owner
  • Proprietor

How Can You Use Barista in a Sentence?

Now that you understand what a barista is, it’s time to practice using our word of the day in a sentence! Test yourself to see how many sentences you can come up with using the word barista. 

Need some help? Check out our usage examples listed below:

Today, I learned the Lavazza company is the parent company of the coffee chain Barista India. 

I gave the barista a substantial tip for getting my huge coffee order correct.

Charlie could not wait for her first day at Starbucks. She had wanted to become a barista for the company for years! 

As a new barista, I have to learn a ton of intricate coffee drinks while always maintaining a positive attitude. 

I’ve been a barista at the local coffee shop down the road since I was 16 years old!

Whenever the weather is less than favorable, I rely on my local barista’s famous cup of Joe to warm me up! 

I sent in my coffee order via SMS so the barista should have it ready for you to pick up upon arrival.

The friendly barista gave me a free coffee after realizing it was my birthday.

Michelle just got hired as the new barista at the Java Hut and has to open tomorrow morning at the crack of dawn.

If you’re an early bird and have a passion for coffee, you’d probably love working as a barista.

What Are Translations for Barista?

Planning a trip overseas? You may want to consider learning a few translations to ensure that you’ll never go without your favorite java drink! Here are a few translations of the word barista:

  • Tamil — குட்டீஸ்களோடு
  • Arabic — باريستا
  • Turkish — barista
  • Vietnamese — thợ pha cà phê
  • Portuguese — barista
  • Hindi — बरिस्ता
  • Italian — baristi, bariste (plural forms) barista
  • Chinese — 咖啡师
  • Japanese — バリスタ


To cut a long story short, a barista is simply a coffee shop employee who specializes in making espresso lattes, cappuccinos, and other coffee drinks. These amazing workers are what keeps millions of people energized throughout the day — so don’t be stingy, and be sure to tip your barista!


  1. Barista | definition | Cambridge English Dictionary 
  2. Barista synonyms: 62 Words and Phrases for Barista | Power Thesaurus 
  3. Barista definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary and Thesaurus 
  4. Barista Definition & Meaning |