From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
A bar (also called a pub or tavern) is a business that serves drinks, especially alcoholic beverages such as beer, liquor, and mixed drinks, for consumption on the premises. Bars provide stools or chairs for the patrons along tables or raised counters. Some bars have entertainment on a stage, such as a live band, comedians, go-go dancers, a floor show or strippers (see strip club). Bars that are part of hotels are sometimes called long bars or hotel lounges.
The term "bar" is derived from the specialized counter on which drinks are served and is a synecdoche applied to the whole of the drinking establishment. The "back bar" or "gantry" is a set of shelves of glasses and bottles behind that counter. In some bars, the gantry is elaborately decorated with woodwork, etched glass, mirrors, and lights. When food is served elsewhere in the establishment, it may also be ordered and eaten at the bar.