AskDefine | Define gourmand

Dictionary Definition

gourmand n : a person who is devoted to eating and drinking to excess [syn: glutton, trencherman]

User Contributed Dictionary



from French


  • (Francophone) /ˈgʊʁmɑ̃/
  • /ˈgʊəmənd/


  1. a person given to excess in the consumption of food and drink. A greedy or ravenous eater; a glutton. See gormand.
    That great gourmand, fat Apicius - Ben Jonson
  2. a person who appreciates good food. (Usage note: Some people feel this is an erroneous usage and should be gourmet for this sense.)





gourmand ( gourmande, gourmands, gourmandes)
  1. eating a lot
  2. (Modern): having a love for good food, demanding of food quality


  1. a person who is gourmand.

Usage notes

The French and English usages of this word are false friends. While the English word has evolved to emphasize the excesses of a gourmand, the French word has become more associated with refined tastes in food. See also gourmet which has considerable overlap with the present word.

Extensive Definition

A gourmand is a gourmet, or namely an individual who has a discerning palate, and is a connoisseur of good food.
An older usage of the word is to describe a person given to excess in the consumption of food and drink, synonymous with "glutton".
In this latter usage, there is a parallel concern among the French that their word for the appreciation of gourmet cuisine (gourmandise) is historically included in the French Catholic list of the Seven Deadly Sins. With the evolution in the meaning of gourmand (and gourmandise) away from gluttony, towards the appreciation of good food, French culinary proponents are advocating that the Catholic Church update the infamous list to refer to "gloutonnerie" rather than "gourmandise".
It can refer to:
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