cel·​lar | \ ˈse-lər How to pronounce cellar (audio) \

Definition of cellar

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a room or set of rooms below the ground floor of a building : basement There's storage space in the cellar.
b(1) : a room for storing wines : wine cellar
(2) : a stock of wines a restaurant with an impressive cellar
2 : the lowest grade or rank especially : the lowest place in the standings (as of an athletic league) The team spent most of last year in the cellar.


cellared; cellaring

Definition of cellar (Entry 2 of 2)

1 transitive : to put or keep (something, such as wine or cheese) in a cellar for storage or aging Each batch is handmade to achieve a delicate soft texture, then cellared for a month to complete the aging …— Juliet Harbutt
2 intransitive : to be stored in a cellar : to undergo aging while being stored in a cellar Perfectly drinkable now, but will cellar nicely for another 3–5 years.Wine Enthusiast Magazine

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Synonyms for cellar

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of cellar in a Sentence

Noun The cellar has a dirt floor. a restaurant with an impressive cellar
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The brand matured under the care of renowned winemaker Greg Brewer, who ran the cellar from 1997 to 2015, and is thriving today under Chad Melville, who sold his own wine brand, Samsara, to focus on the family label when Brewer left. Matt Kettmann, SFChronicle.com, "Melville is the Sta. Rita Hills destination for zesty wines," 25 June 2020 Oh, a cabbage might pass the length of an entire winter relatively intact in a cool cellar. Bill St. John, The Denver Post, "Why you should embrace fermentation — yes, fermentation — when cooking at home," 21 Jan. 2020 Meanwhile, the basement features a wine and beer cellar for entertaining guests. Claudia Harmata, PEOPLE.com, "The Frat House from the Movie Neighbors Has Hit the Market for $1.5 Million — See Inside!," 13 July 2020 Today, both tend to linger in the vineyard as much as the cellar. Mike Dunne, SFChronicle.com, "Lucas is the winery that persuaded the Supreme Court to allow shipping wine across state lines," 15 June 2020 The 19,000 square foot winery facility will include a tasting room, commercial kitchen, outdoor garden areas and underground cellar for storing and aging sparkling wines. Michael Alberty | For The Oregonian/oregonlive, oregonlive, "Willamette Valley Vineyards raises funds for a sparkling wine oasis in the Dundee Hills," 7 July 2020 Charles Krug soon became known for quality and innovations in the cellar, thanks to the work of the two Mondavi sons, Robert and Peter, who introduced techniques like cold fermentations and oak-barrel aging. Virginie Boone, SFChronicle.com, "Charles Krug: Drink in the history at Napa’s Valley’s oldest tasting room," 9 June 2020 The set was two stories high to allow for the cellar. Clark Collis, EW.com, "Evil Dead 2 actor Danny Hicks diagnosed with stage 4 cancer," 6 June 2020 But even though quiet cellars, grassy estate lawns, and secluded verandas seem purpose-built for this new era, this summer will no doubt look and feel different than years past. Noah Kaufman, Condé Nast Traveler, "As Napa Wineries Reopen, They're Changing Up Their Tastings," 22 May 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Former President Bill Clinton cellared Grand Staircase-Escalante a national monument in 1996 and former President Barack Obama protected Bears Ears in 2016, both using the 1906 Antiquities Act. TheWeek, "Trump officially opens formerly protected Utah national monuments for business," 7 Feb. 2020 Also, grab an extra bottle to cellar for next year; this is one of those beers that gets better with age. Ac Shilton, Outside Online, "The 9 Best Winter Beers Available Now," 6 Dec. 2019 Keeping carrots and cellaring them, that concentrates the sugars. Kristine M. Kierzek, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Blind Horse executive chef pursued his art, until culinary interests called," 9 July 2018 And seldom are fragrances lovingly cellared in oak barrels. John Brodie, Town & Country, "Why Some Perfumers Are Betting That Fragrance Gets Better With Age," 30 Apr. 2018 Their 2014 is an intense and tightly wound wine that needs decanting or, better yet, cellaring a few years. 3. Lettie Teague, WSJ, "Enough With the Merlot Bashing: A Wine That’s Ripe for Revival," 26 Apr. 2018 His rich, concentrated Volnay will benefit from decanting or cellaring a few years—and signals a very promising start. 5. Lettie Teague, WSJ, "Beat the Burgundy Bubble: 11 Still-Affordable Wines," 7 Dec. 2017 The wines still can be cellared for years after their release. Carol Deptolla, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Exploring Spain through wine at Milwaukee restaurants," 3 Oct. 2017 With cooler weather on the way, the kitchen staff has been making jams out of the last of summer peaches and apricots, pickling green beans and cellaring root vegetables. Nancy Matsumoto, WSJ, "At Chef Michael Stadtländer’s Farmhouse, Dinner Is Served," 14 Sep. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cellar.' 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 cellar


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


circa 1551, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cellar


Middle English celer "storeroom, underground chamber," borrowed from Anglo-French, "storeroom," going back to Latin cellārium, from cella "store, larder, small room" + -ārium -ary entry 1

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Time Traveler for cellar

Time Traveler

The first known use of cellar was in the 13th century

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Statistics for cellar

Last Updated

8 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Cellar.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cellar. Accessed 14 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for cellar


How to pronounce cellar (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of cellar

: the part of a building that is entirely or partly below the ground
: the wines that are stored in a restaurant, in someone's home, etc.


cel·​lar | \ ˈse-lər How to pronounce cellar (audio) \

Kids Definition of cellar

: a room or set of rooms below the surface of the ground : basement

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