An appetizer is the first
part of a meal
, designed to boost the appetite
of the diner
. It tends to be a small
amount of food
. The idea is that this stimulates
to produce saliva
and the stomach
to produce acid
ready for the arrival of food in the main course
. These reactions in the body make a person feel physically ready to eat, but the flavour in the appetizer also stimulates the mind and inspires
the correct mood
for tucking into some delicious
food. It provides a taste
of what is to come.
The term is also sometimes used to refer to anything that provides people with a suggestion of something good on it's way. A preview of a film may be called an appetizer or mild flirtation on a date may be considered an appetizer, rasing anticipation of activities to come.
This is one of those words that we spell differently in British English, as appetiser.