[ rel-ish ]
See synonyms for: relishrelishedrelishesrelishing on

  1. liking or enjoyment of the taste of something.

  2. pleasurable appreciation of anything; liking: He has no relish for obscene jokes.

  1. Cooking.

    • something savory or appetizing added to a meal, as pickles or olives.

    • a sweet pickle made of various vegetables, usually chopped or minced.

    • an appetizer or hors d'oeuvre.

  2. a pleasing or appetizing flavor.

  3. a pleasing or enjoyable quality.

  4. a taste or flavor.

  5. a smack, trace, or touch of something.

verb (used with object)
  1. to take pleasure in; like; enjoy: I don't relish the long drive home.

  2. to make pleasing to the taste.

  1. to like the taste of.

verb (used without object)
  1. to have taste or flavor.

  2. to be agreeable.

Origin of relish

First recorded in 1520–30; alteration of Middle English reles “aftertaste, scent,” from Old French, variant of relais “remainder, that left behind”; see release

Other words for relish

Opposites for relish

Other words from relish

  • rel·ish·a·ble, adjective
  • rel·ish·ing·ly, adverb
  • self-relish, noun
  • un·rel·ish·a·ble, adjective
  • un·rel·ished, adjective
  • un·rel·ish·ing, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use relish in a sentence

  • After a moment's pause, as if relishing the sensation he had created, Garnache rose to his feet and leapt briskly to the ground.

    St. Martin's Summer | Rafael Sabatini
  • Jimmy says it wanders off for a walk nearly every day talking to itself and going into gardens and relishing things.

  • Its maist ot tinsel wark, said Jean, neither relishing nor appreciating his fine sentiments and figures.

    Spare Hours | John Brown
  • By this means the meat will be more equally dressed and more evenly browned, and will be found to be much more relishing.

  • His self-esteem was hurt at the child not relishing his waggery.

    A Book of Ghosts | Sabine Baring-Gould

British Dictionary definitions for relish


/ (ˈrɛlɪʃ) /

  1. to savour or enjoy (an experience) to the full

  2. to anticipate eagerly; look forward to

  1. to enjoy the taste or flavour of (food, etc); savour

  2. to give appetizing taste or flavour to (food), by or as if by the addition of pickles or spices

  1. liking or enjoyment, as of something eaten or experienced (esp in the phrase with relish)

  2. pleasurable anticipation: he didn't have much relish for the idea

  1. an appetizing or spicy food added to a main dish to enhance its flavour

  2. an appetizing taste or flavour

  3. a zestful trace or touch: there was a certain relish in all his writing

  4. music (in English lute, viol, and keyboard music of the 16th and 17th centuries) a trilling ornament, used esp at cadences

Origin of relish

C16: from earlier reles aftertaste, from Old French: something remaining, from relaisser to leave behind; see release

Derived forms of relish

  • relishable, adjective

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012