Definition of cocktail in English:


See synonyms for cocktail on

Translate cocktail into Spanish


  • 1An alcoholic drink consisting of a spirit or several spirits mixed with other ingredients, such as fruit juice, lemonade, or cream.

    ‘a champagne cocktail’
    • ‘a cocktail party’
    • ‘The fight came at the end of a night's clubbing during which the prince is reported to have drunk vodka cocktails, tequila and beer.’
    • ‘Just as my fellow students were intimidated by formal grammar, a lot of otherwise sophisticated people are intimidated by spirits, cocktails and mixed drinks.’
    • ‘Spring is the time in her restaurant for rum drinks, cocktails with fruit and drinks with fizz.’
    • ‘Over a third of women in their twenties are binge drinkers and their fondness for products like vodka and cocktails have helped drive spirits sales.’
    • ‘Sip from frothy coffee ice cream smoothies or alcohol-free cocktails and indulge in the salon atmosphere.’
    • ‘The bar sells a wonderful array of beers, cocktails and spirits, with an equally eclectic range of superior pub grub that includes pizza, curry and just about everything else.’
    • ‘Most spirit based drinks and cocktails cost about $10 each.’
    • ‘He obviously had no concept about what each ingredient in the cocktail brought to the drink.’
    • ‘You have a few cocktails, drink some tequila, and everyone gets along.’
    • ‘Now it has been renovated to include a restaurant, lounge bar, cocktail bar and beer garden.’
    • ‘A nation once wedded to spirits, beer and cocktails changed its habits dramatically in the past quarter of a century.’
    • ‘Her first priority, though, is to have a few drinks at the cocktail party later tonight.’
    • ‘Maybe I'll survive as long as I don't start drinking cocktails with umbrellas in them.’
    • ‘In many ways it is apt that this adulterated tequila drink was their cocktail of choice.’
    • ‘In addition, alcoholic cocktail drinks must be clearly labelled and not portrayed as fizzy soft drinks.’
    • ‘Who was she kidding, turning up at this fancy bar drinking sickly sweet cocktails that cost $14 each?’
    • ‘The drinks are good, if somewhat pricy - the cocktails are packed with alcohol and very drinkable.’
    • ‘She has some specific tips for setting up a bar for a cocktail party.’
    • ‘I was a little more drunk than I thought I was, having drunk several cocktails and a little Champagne.’
    • ‘You lounge around the two freeform pools, walk to the beach, drink cocktails at the bar, eat well and sleep deeply.’
    1. 1.1A mixture of substances or factors, especially when dangerous or unpleasant in its effects.
      ‘a cocktail of drugs with severe side effects’
      • ‘financial pressure plus isolation can be a deadly cocktail for some people’
      • ‘The company is focusing on getting its cocktail, a mixture of three drugs, to market.’
      • ‘A well-known technique is to give horses a cocktail of substances from the same family of drugs.’
      • ‘A cocktail of substances is now burning from several storage containers, but fire authorities say the blaze is well under control.’
      • ‘Away from the action, it's a dangerous cocktail as a new book on the misdemeanours of America's basketballers.’
      • ‘I hate him and love him in equal measure, and it's a dangerous cocktail.’
      • ‘First love, new experiences and no parental control must be a dangerous cocktail.’
      • ‘The watchdog group found a cocktail of dangerous pesticides when they tested 12 leading brands of drink.’
      • ‘The second sequel of the film is back with its deadly cocktail of fast cars, mean racers and hot babes.’
      • ‘Guilt, selfishness, deep sorrow and frustration all mingled together in my conscience like a deadly cocktail.’
      • ‘In the late 1990s, antiretroviral drug cocktails extended the lives of those who could afford them.’
      • ‘He became concerned about the cocktail of eight drugs his wife was prescribed to combat depression and anxiety because he felt they were harming her.’
      • ‘She was on a cocktail of drink and drugs when she burgled a total of four houses to fund her drug addiction.’
      • ‘A cocktail of drugs kept her slim, awake and bright-eyed for filming, and then helped her sleep at night.’
      • ‘I take a cocktail of exotic drugs which give me vivid dreams.’
      • ‘I should be having my own fun and excitement, off my dial on a cocktail of medically-sanctioned drugs.’
      • ‘A worker stopped by police on his way to work at a local bacon factory had a cocktail of illegal drugs with him.’
      • ‘Rugby, lads, pub, Saturday… the result of this dangerous cocktail is not hard to imagine.’
      • ‘In an operating system, the combination of closed source and entangled structure makes for a deadly cocktail.’
      • ‘She spluttered chaotically - her head racing as she was overcome by a volatile cocktail of heat and cold.’
      • ‘Do they think it necessary to serve up a crazy cocktail of musical genres in order to justify their entry rates?’
  • 2A dish consisting of small pieces of food, typically served cold at the beginning of a meal as an appetizer.

    ‘a chilled lobster cocktail prettily presented in a martini glass’
    • ‘On the menu are such delights of Olde England: prawn cocktail, steak Diane and banana flambé’
    • ‘A tempting array of starters ranged from melon, garlic bread and prawn cocktail through to pasta dishes which could have been a main course in themselves.’
    • ‘Her preferences seem to rest mainly on seafood cocktails, shrimp and tilapia - a fish I normally find to be insipid stuff.’
    • ‘I looked around, and managed to find a shrimp cocktail that they would serve to some rich businessman flying in one of these things.’
    • ‘Think of them as the best of department store tearoom cuisine - favorites such as shrimp cocktails, chicken salad, and cheese straws.’
    • ‘He celebrated with a shrimp cocktail and big steak Sunday night.’
    • ‘It was mostly a finger food buffet, with mini pizzas and shrimp cocktail.’
    • ‘We were impressed with the crab cocktail and the steak Diane, and the very attentive service we received.’
    • ‘Starters include warm chicken salad, prawn cocktail, smoked salmon and a Tuscan roll with pesto and mozzarella.’
    • ‘This is what we have come to expect of the prawn cocktail: this monster of a crime against the palate.’
    • ‘Seven appetizers and salads are next, including prawn and crab cocktails.’
    • ‘Make a crab cocktail and serve it piled high on a slice of toasted sourdough bread.’
    • ‘A hot station has the meats and the hot containers for the vegetables, while on the other side is the cold station with the prawn cocktails.’
    • ‘Starters included home-made salmon fish cakes, shami kebabs and pickle and fresh prawn cocktail and avocado with tuna marie rose.’



/ˈkäkˌtāl/ /ˈkɑkˌteɪl/


Early 17th century from cock+ tail. The original use was as an adjective describing a creature with a tail like that of a cock, specifically a horse with a docked tail; hence (because hunters and coach-horses were generally docked) a racehorse which was not a thoroughbred, having a cock-tailed horse in its pedigree (early 19th century). cocktail (sense 1) (originally US, also early 19th century) is perhaps analogous, from the idea of an adulterated spirit.