aper·​i·​tif | \ ə-ˌper-ə-ˈtēf How to pronounce aperitif (audio) , a-; ˌä-pər-(ə-)ˈtēf \

Definition of aperitif

: an alcoholic drink taken before a meal as an appetizer

Examples of aperitif in a Sentence

They served us champagne as an aperitif.
Recent Examples on the Web The dominant note in this very light, mellow aperitif is shiso leaf, an ingredient that has been known to make appearances in Rich Table bar manager Larry Piaskowy’s cocktails. Esther Mobley, SFChronicle.com, "Haus’ new aperitifs support shuttered San Francisco restaurants," 18 June 2020 This cocktail mixes the Italian aperitif with orange juice for a sweeter drink. Elizabeth Rhodes, Travel + Leisure, "7 Italian Cocktails That Are Delicious, Refreshing, and Perfect for Summer (Video)," 19 May 2020 Why not instead spend your hours in the warm company of your fellow citizens, reenacting timeless rituals of food and drink, the leisurely aperitif or the two-hour double espresso? Richard Leiby, Washington Post, "One last drink, maybe two? Inside one dive as Parisians say goodbye, for now, to their beloved bars and cafes," 15 Mar. 2020 The evening aperitif is also frowned upon; bars close at 6 p.m. Anchorage Daily News, "Italian premier locks down entire country to stop virus," 10 Mar. 2020 Drinks, besides wine, tequila and mezcal, include an aperitif similar to one sold in Argentina that the restaurant makes, infusing vodka with rosemary, citrus, peppercorns and cloves. Carol Deptolla, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Cavas debuts in the Third Ward with Spanish tapas, and bubbly to drink," 21 Feb. 2020 At the hotel’s aperitif bar, other travelers made racist remarks about her Asian looks. Sarah Frier, Bloomberg.com, "Instagram Versus Reality: Travel Influencers Gloss Over Coronavirus," 29 Apr. 2020 Try her best garden aperitif: a fizzy Prosecco spritzer muddled with fresh mint and garnished with in-bloom nasturtium petals and peach slices. Kaitlyn Yarborough, Southern Living, "Designer Lauren Liess Hosts a Homegrown Supper at Home," 25 Apr. 2020 The evening aperitif is also frowned upon; bars close at 6 p.m. Anchorage Daily News, "Italian premier locks down entire country to stop virus," 10 Mar. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'aperitif.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of aperitif

1894, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for aperitif

borrowed from French apéritif, from apéritif, adjective, "aperient, stimulating appetite," going back to Old French aperitif "aperient," borrowed from Medieval Latin aperitīvus, variant of Late Latin apertīvus, from Latin apertus, past participle of aperīre "to open" + -īvus -ive — more at aperient

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about aperitif

Time Traveler for aperitif

Time Traveler

The first known use of aperitif was in 1894

See more words from the same year

Statistics for aperitif

Last Updated

21 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Aperitif.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/aperitif. Accessed 2 Jul. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for aperitif


How to pronounce aperitif (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of aperitif

: an alcoholic drink that people drink before eating a meal

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on aperitif

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for aperitif

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with aperitif

Spanish Central: Translation of aperitif

Nglish: Translation of aperitif for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about aperitif

Comments on aperitif

What made you want to look up aperitif? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A More Exception(al) Quiz

  • hot dog  hot dog  hot dog  hot dog cat
  • Which of the following words is not a synonym for ‘a young person’?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!