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A gourmand is a person who takes great pleasure and interest in consuming good food and drink.[1] Gourmand originally referred to a person who was "a glutton for food and drink",[2] a person who eats and drinks excessively;[3] this usage is now rare.


The word (from French) has different connotations from the similar word gourmet, which emphasises an individual with a refined discerning palate,[2][4] and is more often applied to the preparer than the consumer of the food. But in practice, the two terms are closely linked, as both imply the enjoyment of good food.

An alternative and older usage of the word is to describe a person given to excess in the consumption of food and drink, as a glutton[2] or a trencherman.[citation needed]

Regarding the latter usage of the term, 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.[citation needed] With the evolution in the meaning of gourmand (and gourmandise) away from gluttony and towards the connoisseur appreciation of good food, French culinary proponents are advocating that the Catholic Church update said list to refer to gloutonnerie rather than gourmandise.[citation needed]

Another alternative use has gained popularity among perfume and cologne designers. In this field, gourmand refers not to a person but to a category of scents related to foods, such as cocoa, apple, and plum.

See also[edit]

  • Ligue des Gourmands, founded by Auguste Escoffier in 1912
  • Epicure (gourmet), a person interested in food, sometimes with overtones of excessive refinement
  • An epicure or epicurean (lower-case) is one who pursues fine food and other pleasures sometimes with overtones of excessive refinement; an Epicurean (capitalized) is one who follows Epicureanism, a system of philosophy developed by Epicurus c. 300 BCE.


  1. ^ Brein, M.; Keller, T. (2013). Travel Tales of Michael Brein: My Best 100:. The Travel Psychologist Travel Tales Series. Michael Brein Incorporated. p. 207. ISBN 978-1-886590-27-4.
  2. ^ a b c Garner, B. (2009). Garner's Modern American Usage. Oxford University Press, USA. p. 398. ISBN 978-0-19-988877-1.
  3. ^ gourmand
  4. ^ Merriam-Webster, Inc (1984). Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Synonyms: A Dictionary of Discriminated Synonyms with Antonyms and Analogous and Contrasted Words. A Merriam-Webster. 범문사. p. 295. ISBN 978-0-87779-341-0.

External links[edit]

  • Media related to Gourmands at Wikimedia Commons
  • The dictionary definition of gourmand at Wiktionary