Euchre QOD: “Flip with a flourish”
You are dealer now
Control of the game is yours
Use the power well
“Upcard” – the card that gets flipped from the remaining four (called either the Kitty or the Talon) that determines the first suit that can be named trump. If everyone passes, the upcard is turned down and a different suit must be named trump or the cards are redealt.
In previous posts we’ve discussed cutting the deck and handling the cards. In this entry we’ll discuss the proper “euchre” way to deal.
Unlike most games, the cards in euchre are not supposed to be dealt one at a time. They are to be dealt in batches of 2 or 3 cards and dealing should be completed in two rounds. Here is a simple method to follow when you have the responsibility for dealing.
1. Gather up the cards and ready them for shuffling. The most critical piece of this step is that YOU gather the cards. A ploy that some shifty players employ is to “help” gather the cards, and then proceed to steal the deal. It’s easy to forget whose deal it is and people just figure the person touching the cards is supposed to be dealing.
2. Shuffle the cards adequately. We talked about shuffling the other day. You should shuffle quickly but thoroughly. The most you should shuffle is seven passes and the least is four. The exact number depends on how quickly you shuffle, how much you like shuffling, and how you want your opponents to feel. If you want to annoy your opponents, shuffle a lot and do it slowly. If you want to intimidate them, shuffle quickly and flashy.
3. Deal out the cards in groups of 2 or 3 in a clock wise manner. Here’s where euchre is different than most any other card game. Dealing is done in two rounds. In the first round, I like to give 2 cards to each player but 3 cards to myself. In the second round, it is 3 cards to everyone else, but 2 to me. Deals of 4 and 1 are just not allowed. If I’m losing, I’ll often mix up the pattern to change my luck. Of course, being the fatalist that I am, I realize that a change is futile.
4. When finished dealing, count the number of cards left over. There should be four. If there is not, you’ve misdealt and need to collect the cards and start over. If there are four, you still may have misdealt but probably not.
5. Put the remaining cards on the table and flip the top card with a flourish. It is perfectly legitimate to loudly call out “HOOK!” when turning the card. While this type of cheering does nothing to affect which card comes out, opponents will find it disturbing when a Jack does come up. Incidentally, this will happen about 17% of the time (1 in 6).
Euchre on the Web
The Euchre Report. A dark recap of a friendly game of euchre by Susan Steinberg. An interesting read.