oe·​no·​phile | \ ˈē-nə-ˌfī(-ə)l \

Definition of oenophile

: a lover or connoisseur of wine

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"It has become quite a common proverb that in wine there is truth," wrote the 1st-century A.D. Roman scholar, Pliny the Elder. The truth about the word wine is that it goes back to Latin vinum, but it is also a distant relative of the Greek word for wine, which is oinos. Indeed, Latin borrowed from the Greek to create a combining form that means "wine," oeno-. Modern French speakers combined oeno- with -phile (Greek for "lover of") to create oenophile before we adopted it from them in the mid-1800s. Oenophiles are sure to know oenology (now more often spelled enology) as the science of wine making and oenologist (now more often enologist) for one versed in oenology.

Examples of oenophile in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Even die-hard oenophiles in the room will usually give an approving nod. Isaiah Freeman-schub, WSJ, "Senior Market Editor Isaiah Freeman-Schub’s Holiday Gift Guide: Man of the World," 12 Dec. 2018 Monticello, Virginia History buffs and oenophiles alike can do double duty at this southern AVA where colonial, Revolutionary, and Civil War-era histories intersect with unique viticulture. Todd Plummer, Vogue, "Beyond Napa: 7 Emerging American Wine Regions to Visit Now," 29 Aug. 2018 Both a wine bar and well-stocked shop, petite Carpe Diem is a casual, library-like oenophile hangout in Chișinău, the capital of Moldova. Alia Akkam, Vogue, "Why Moldova Is a Wine Destination Worth Knowing Now," 27 Sep. 2018 Drink: Vignoble de l'Orpailleur L'Orpailleur brings 40 years of experience making wines in one of the country’s most marginal climates, and its shop (and tasting room) is a must-stop for any oenophile traveling through the Eastern Townships. Isa Tousignant, Condé Nast Traveler, "3 Best Day Trips From Montreal," 17 Aug. 2018 While the winery doesn’t retail (yet), oenophiles can order online, or make a visit to Kokomo’s tasting room, set on 120 acres of Dry Creek Valley vineyards, and glowing with the Hoosier hospitality that Miller was raised on. Sunset, "Meet the Year’s Winning Wine," 22 Jan. 2018 Today, Anderson Valley is California’s most exciting emerging wine region, a magnet for the 21st century’s new class of NoCal back-to-the landers: oenophiles, foodies, and others who want to live simply but sumptuously. Jody Rosen, Smithsonian, "This Secret Corner of California Is a Paradise for Lovers of Great Food and Top-Notch Wines," 14 June 2018 Hop aboard the Hop Train for a craft beer experience worthy of Napa Valley The Napa Valley Wine Train’s restored vintage railcars have carried oenophiles along the tracks with pours aplenty for over 150 years. Sunset, "Napa’s New Beer Train is a Boozy Summer Dream," 22 Jan. 2018 The next night, Breuder, an oenophile, threw another holiday dinner, this time for top administrators; 18 people were there. Stacy St. Clair, chicagotribune.com, "College of DuPage sues former president for $25 million," 2 July 2018

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

1865, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for oenophile

French œnophile, from œno- (from Greek oinos wine) + -phile -phile — more at wine

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Last Updated

8 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for oenophile

The first known use of oenophile was in 1865

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