Word of the Day : November 5, 2010

greasy spoon

noun GREE-see-SPOON


: a dingy small cheap restaurant

Did You Know?

In the decades following its first use in 1902, the surrounding context of "greasy spoon" usually included words along the lines of "lousy," "wind up eating in," "slinging hash," "the underside of society," "settle for," or "rather starve." And while things haven't changed entirely, a recent wave of nostalgia has elevated the status of greasy spoons. Since the 1970s, the descriptions might contain words like "fabled," "distinction," "beloved," "classic," "an institution," "fondness for," and "comfort food." Now you can consult a "Greasy Spoon Guide" and read up on "Best Greasy Spoons," or lunch at a diner "restored to look like a greasy spoon." Some of these eateries are now even named "The Greasy Spoon."


For dinner, Juan and his sister, who was visiting him at college, went to his favorite greasy spoon in the city.

"When I first went on the road, I went into every truck stop and greasy spoon in the country just to experience it all." -- Trisha Yearwood, quoted in The Dallas Morning News, April 14, 2010

Quick Quiz

What word rhymes with "scenery" and means "restaurant"? The answer is ...


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