UK:*UK and possibly other pronunciationsUK and possibly other pronunciations/ˈkɒkteɪl/US:USA pronunciation: IPA and respellingUSA pronuncation: IPA/ˈkɑkˌteɪl/ ,USA pronunciation: respelling(koktāl′)

WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2020
cock•tail1 /ˈkɑkˌteɪl/USA pronunciation   n. 
  1. Wine[countable] any of various chilled mixed drinks, made up typically of an alcoholic liquor mixed with flavorings.
  2. Fooda cold mixture of small pieces of food served as an appetizer: [uncountable]He ate shrimp cocktail every chance he had.[countable]He had only fruit cocktail for lunch.
  3. Drugs a mixture made up of many different ingredients:[countable]a cocktail of jet fuel and kerosene, alcohol and ethanol.

adj. [before a noun]
  1. Clothingstyled for more formal or festive occasions:a cocktail dress.
  2. Wineused in or suitable for cocktails:a jar of cocktail onions.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
cock•tail1  (koktāl′),USA pronunciation n. 
  1. Wineany of various short mixed drinks, consisting typically of gin, whiskey, rum, vodka, or brandy, with different admixtures, as vermouth, fruit juices, or flavorings, usually chilled and frequently sweetened.
  2. Fooda portion of food, as seafood served with a sauce, a mixture of fruits, or juice, served as the appetizer course of a meal.
  3. Drugs[Pharm.]a beverage or solution concocted of various drugs.
  4. any eclectic mixture or miscellaneous collection.

  1. Wineto drink cocktails, esp. at a cocktail party:They cocktailed before going to the theater.

  1. Clothing(of women's clothing) styled for semiformal wear:a cocktail dress.
  2. Wineof, pertaining to, used in, or suitable to the serving of cocktails:cocktail onions; cocktail napkins.
  • 1800–10, American; origin, originally obscure; none of numerous attempts to explain the origin, originally of this word or its relationship to cocktail2 have won general acceptance

cock•tail2  (koktāl′),USA pronunciation n. 
  1. Dog and Cat Breedsa horse with a docked tail.
  2. Dog and Cat Breedsa horse that is not a thoroughbred.
  3. a man of little breeding who passes for a gentleman.
  • cock2 + tail1 1590–1600

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
cocktail /ˈkɒkˌteɪl/ n
  1. any mixed drink with a spirit base, usually drunk before meals
  2. (as modifier): the cocktail hour
  3. an appetizer of seafood, mixed fruits, etc
  4. any combination of diverse elements, esp one considered potent
  5. (modifier) appropriate for formal occasions: a cocktail dress
Etymology: 19th Century: of unknown origin
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