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: being, inducing, or marked by the one of the five basic taste sensations that is peculiarly acrid, astringent, and often disagreeable and characteristic of citrus peels, unsweetened cocoa, black coffee, mature leafy greens (such as kale or mustard), or ale
The pill left a bitter taste in my mouth.
bitter chocolatescompare salty entry 1 sense 1b, sour entry 1 sense 1, sweet entry 1, umami entry 2 sense 1
: distasteful or distressing to the mind : galling
a bitter sense of shame
: marked by intensity or severity:
: accompanied by severe pain or suffering
a bitter death
: being relentlessly determined : vehement
a bitter partisan
: exhibiting intense animosity
: harshly reproachful
: marked by cynicism and rancor
was still bitter about not being chosen
: intensely unpleasant especially in coldness or rawness
a bitter wind
: caused by or expressive of severe pain, grief, or regret
: bitter quality
… stepping outside your comfort zone and taking the bitter with the sweet.—James Poniewoziks
: the taste sensation that is peculiarly acrid, astringent, and often disagreeable and is characteristic of citrus peels, unsweetened cocoa, black coffee, mature leafy greens (such as kale or mustard), or ale compare salty entry 2, sour entry 2 sense 1b, sweet entry 3 sense 2, umami entry 1
bitters ˈbi-tərz plural : a usually alcoholic solution of bitter and often aromatic plant products used especially in preparing mixed drinks or as a mild tonic (see tonic entry 1 sense 1b)
British : a very dry (see dry entry 1 sense 7b) heavily hopped ale
bittered; bittering; bitters
Adjective Cocoa beans have a bitter flavor. The medicine had a bitter aftertaste. We were struck by the bitter irony of the situation. His betrayal had made her bitter. She was still bitter toward her ex-husband. He's the bitterest man I know. Noun The cocktail recipe called for a dash of bitters. a good selection of bitters See More
Recent Examples on the Web
AdjectiveAnything sweet in the Hoosiers' season was also bitter, as the end arrived earlier than anyone on the MVP Arena home bench would have hoped. —Zach Osterman, The Indianapolis Star, 20 Mar. 2023 Having lost his daughter at the outbreak of the apocalypse, Joel (Pedro Pascal) was hardened and bitter when originally tasked with escorting Ellie across the country, where her immunity to the virus might provide hope for humanity. —Brian Lowry, CNN, 12 Mar. 2023 The grounds produced resulted in a cup of coffee that was a bit bready and bitter on the end and had a bit of an amber ale feel. —Barbara Bellesi Zito, Peoplemag, 7 Mar. 2023 The carpenter Geppetto is heartbroken and bitter years after having lost his son, Carlo. —oregonlive, 6 Mar. 2023 Angry and bitter toward his late father, young Adonis ventures to Philly to ask Rocky to train him. —Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, 3 Mar. 2023 But many areas of the world experience bitter winters, as well as sweltering summers. —Allison Parshall, Scientific American, 27 Feb. 2023 The last bitcoin bull run turned into a bitter crypto winter in late 2021, with the bitcoin price crashing to under $16,000 per bitcoin from a peak of almost $70,000. —Billy Bambrough, Forbes, 22 Feb. 2023 Afghanistan’s economy is now on the brink of collapse, with millions unemployed and close to starvation — a dire humanitarian crisis exacerbated by a bitter winter. —Aina J. Khan, NBC News, 17 Feb. 2023
NounCampari, the maker of the red Italian bitter that characterizes the vibrant cocktail, shared its Classic Negroni recipe with USA TODAY. —Morgan Hines, USA TODAY, 3 Feb. 2023 Bengals receiver Ja’Marr Chase fumbled on the ensuing possession to set up the nail-bitter of a finish. —Michael Niziolek, cleveland, 24 Dec. 2022 In contrast, landing on cards with odd numbers resulted in a bitter-tasting quinine. —Alexandra Kukulka, Chicago Tribune, 16 Dec. 2022 In contrast, landing on cards with odd numbers resulted in a bitter-tasting quinine. —Alexandra Kukulka, Chicago Tribune, 16 Dec. 2022 In contrast, landing on cards with odd numbers resulted in a bitter-tasting quinine. —Alexandra Kukulka, Chicago Tribune, 16 Dec. 2022 The leaves are typically dried and ground up, then brewed in hot water to make a bitter-tasting tea. —Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 10 Oct. 2022 In contrast, landing on cards with odd numbers resulted in a bitter-tasting quinine. —Alexandra Kukulka, Chicago Tribune, 16 Dec. 2022 To make it, blend tender kale leaves (be sure to skip the bitter-tasting stems) with rum, simple syrup, lime juice, and ice for a cocktail appropriately colored for St. Patrick's Day. —Sarah Martens, Better Homes & Gardens, 21 Oct. 2022
VerbMost Beach Club beers, like Mango Colada with coconut and lime, have minimal amounts of bittering hops. —Eric Velasco, al, 23 Apr. 2020 This grape is extremely approachable, with lots of fruit flavor and balanced dryness, due to the low tannins, which are the drying or bittering agent in many wines. —Paul Daugherty, Cincinnati.com, 7 Nov. 2019 With all the ABVs and bittering units, barrel sizes and batch numbers, a beer bottle’s label can often read like the back of a baseball card. —William Bostwick, WSJ, 8 Aug. 2018 The liqueur puts Indiana persimmons front and center while adding traditional bittering agents like rhubarb root and bitter orange peel, with cardamom and spearmint offering added complexity. —Kenney Marlatt, chicagotribune.com, 30 May 2018 Another hop, typically grown in the Southern Hemisphere and used largely as a bittering agent, presented big, fruit flavors more like traditional West Coast hops. —Natasha Geiling, Smithsonian, 21 May 2018 Those are made employing the still somewhat suspicious American practice of adding bittering hops to the mix, but there's nothing aggressive or even untoward about them. —Mike Sula, Chicago Reader, 22 Mar. 2018 Night Shift built Nite Lite similarly, adding real corn (as opposed to corn syrup or rice syrup) and brewing with a touch of Saaz hops, the classic bittering agent in a Czech pilsner. —Gary Dzen, BostonGlobe.com, 20 Mar. 2018 Two grants for a total of $135,154 went to Pennsylvania State University for projects involving hops, which are the bittering agent in beer. —Harold Brubaker, Philly.com, 1 Mar. 2018
AdverbTo see whether an individual’s diet affects the composition of its saliva, researchers gathered saliva from rats habituated to a diet including bitter-tasting quinine. —Chris Gorski, Discover Magazine, 28 Jan. 2023 This mutation might even be an evolutionary remnant of a once-crucial survival mechanism to avoid bitter-tasting toxic plants and animals. —Kareem Clark, Discover Magazine, 1 Nov. 2021 Do not let this sadness, this fear, rage turn you bitter towards our world. —Kathleen Foody, BostonGlobe.com, 8 July 2022 Shake out every last drop from your previous pot to keep the next round from turning bitter. —Max Falkowitz, Bon Appétit, 5 May 2022 Two-thirds of 137 participants in the Phase 2 trial received AMX0035, a bitter-tasting powder mixed with water to be drunk or ingested through a feeding tube twice daily. —New York Times, 30 Mar. 2022 The ingredients for — and method of making — the crisp, bright and bitter-leaning drink lie directly in its name. —Rebekah Peppler, Los Angeles Times, 25 Mar. 2022 Wormwood is a European plant that yields a bitter-tasting oil but contains neither worm nor wood. —Richard Lederer, San Diego Union-Tribune, 12 June 2021 The benefit to squeezers is more control over the juicing process, so your end result should be pure, delicious juice with no bitter-tasting peel oil. —Laura Duerr, chicagotribune.com, 13 Mar. 2021 See More
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bitter.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
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