bo·​de·​ga | \ bō-ˈdā-gə How to pronounce bodega (audio) \

Definition of bodega

1 : a storehouse for maturing wine
3 : a usually small grocery store in an urban area specifically : one specializing in Hispanic groceries

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Apothecaries, Bodegas, and Boutiques

Apothecary, bodega, and boutique may not look very similar, but they are all related both in meaning and in origin. Each of these words can be traced back to a Latin word for “storehouse” (apotheca), and each one refers in English to a retail establishment of some sort. Although bodega initially meant “a storehouse for wine,” it now most commonly refers to a grocery store in an urban area, especially one that specializes in Hispanic groceries. Boutique has also taken on new meanings: its first sense in English (“a small retail store”) is still current, but it now may also denote “a small company that offers highly specialized products or services.” Of the three words, apothecary has changed the least; it has gone from referring solely to the person who sells drugs or medicines to also naming the store where such goods are sold.

Examples of bodega in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The flagship beer at Fort Point, meanwhile, is its mild, light-bodied KSA, a Kolsch-style ale, which, like the rest of the Fort Point core portfolio, is brewed year-round and available in cans at your local bodega. Esther Mobley, San Francisco Chronicle, "San Francisco’s new hometown brewery," 31 Jan. 2020 For sandwich enthusiast and Desus & Mero producer Josh Gondelman, however, a sandwich was also a salad, thanks to the greens enthusiasm of his local bodega. Cady Lang, Time, "Entire Salad Appears in Man's Sandwich for Sneaky Unknown Reasons," 13 Dec. 2019 These bodegas, as the Spanish call them, are what draw tourists to Ribera del Duero. Amy Tara Koch,, "Wineries north of Madrid start to come into their own as the ‘Sonoma of Spain’," 6 Dec. 2019 Set in Washington Heights in New York, the story centers on Usnavi (Anthony Ramos), a friendly bodega owner who narrates the lives and loves of the neighborhood around him. David Sims, The Atlantic, "25 Movies to Look Forward to in 2020," 7 Jan. 2020 The film tells the story of a mostly Hispanic neighborhood in New York City and centers around bodega owner Usnavi, played by Anthony Ramos. Lisa Respers France, CNN, "Lin-Manuel Miranda's 'In the Heights' trailer debuts," 12 Dec. 2019 In The Heights tells the story of residents living in New York City’s largely Latino neighborhood of Washington Heights, where bodega owner Usnavi is saving every penny while dreaming of a bigger life. Rosy Cordero,, "First In the Heights footage reveals full trailer coming Thursday," 11 Dec. 2019 Jersey City shooting: One victim owned the kosher supermarket A shooting spree that killed a police officer and three others in New Jersey targeted a kosher bodega, officials said Wednesday. Ashley Shaffer, USA TODAY, "Was the shooting an act of hate?," 11 Dec. 2019 Pablo Rind has been working at a 24-hour Brooklyn bodega since dropping out of school. Lakshmi Gandhi, NBC News, "13 best Asian American children's and young adult books 2019," 10 Nov. 2019

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

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First Known Use of bodega

1656, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bodega

Spanish, from Latin apotheca storehouse — more at apothecary

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Time Traveler for bodega

Time Traveler

The first known use of bodega was in 1656

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Statistics for bodega

Last Updated

15 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Bodega.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Feb. 2020.

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bodega

Spanish Central: Translation of bodega

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