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Is there a single word meaning "the thing that attracts me"?

The terms attractor or drawer don't feel right:

The attractor for me at this restaurant is their sumptuous ravioli.

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9 Answers 9

59

The allure for me at this restaurant is their sumptuous ravioli.

allure TFD

n.

The power to attract; enticement.

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  • Thank you! This is exactly the word I was after.
    – Siddhartha
    May 19, 2019 at 20:01
  • 16
    Ravioli may have an allure, but I don't think it is an allure...
    – usul
    May 20, 2019 at 0:51
  • @usul This usage works fine for me, maybe a bit weird May 20, 2019 at 19:55
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    It's weird because it's almost always used as an adjective, sometimes as a verb, and rarely as a noun.
    – Mazura
    May 20, 2019 at 21:26
  • Possibly even just lure (the noun). Probably focuses on the attractive force rather than the thing which exudes it. May 22, 2019 at 12:53
50

The appeal maybe? "To me, the appeal of this restaurant is their sumptuous ravioli."


From Cambridge Dictionary: "the quality in someone or something that makes him, her, or it attractive or interesting:"

  • sex appeal
  • Spielberg's movies have a wide appeal.
  • This used to be a marvellous hotel but it has lost its appeal in recent years.
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  • 2
    Hi, Erwan. Could you supply quotes and attributed references ... answers on ELU are preferred when supported by such, even when they're quite obviously correct. May 21, 2019 at 11:02
  • 1
    @EdwinAshworth sure, added a definition with examples
    – Erwan
    May 21, 2019 at 11:24
  • Thank you. 'ELU expects' and all that :) May 21, 2019 at 11:30
38

I think you're going for "attraction" which is the noun form of attract. But the sentence is still a little stilted. "Draw" would be nice - "The draw for me at this restaurant is the sumptuous ravioli."

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  • +1 Yes, but: The attraction for me of this x
    – Lambie
    May 19, 2019 at 19:39
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    The draw is right. drawer felt so weird, I knew I was missing something.
    – Siddhartha
    May 19, 2019 at 20:02
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    @Siddhartha An easy mstake to make but a "drawer" is sliding part of a piece of furniture, very occasionally a graphic artist or, even less frequently, someone who pulls raffle tickets from a hat or water from well. A "draw" is an attraction.
    – BoldBen
    May 20, 2019 at 7:40
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    Hi, Jane. Could you supply quotes and attributed references ... answers on ELU are preferred when supported by such, even when they're quite obviously correct. May 21, 2019 at 11:01
  • Perhaps main attraction is more natural? May 21, 2019 at 18:12
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Enticing? It may be worth using a thesaurus here to get a list of suitable words.

I was enticed to the restaurant by their delicious ravioli.

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  • 2
    Probably "Enticement" is the form they need, but good answer May 21, 2019 at 18:26
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The word magnet is often used metaphorically, and is probably usually one of the most natural-sounding of the set of synonyms:

magnet noun ...

1.1 A person or thing that has a powerful attraction.

‘the beautiful stretch of white sand is a magnet for sun-worshippers’

{ODO}

However, I'd have to re-arrange OP's example to 'The sumptuous ravioli is a magnet for many people at this restaurant.'

Crowd-puller, main attraction, inducement and lure are synonyms that may work on occasion.

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  • 1
    Upvote for lure.
    – jxh
    May 21, 2019 at 19:55
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If you're looking for a colorful word, you could use also catnip:

Someone or something that is very attractive or appealing to a particular person or group.

e.g. For me, this restaurant's sumptuous ravioli is just catnip.

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  • 6
    This is taking metaphor to absurd lengths...
    – smci
    May 21, 2019 at 9:46
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    @smci: I've seen/heard it used. May 21, 2019 at 10:30
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    well not outside the rhetorical flourishes of restaurant reviewers, in everyday speech...?
    – smci
    May 22, 2019 at 5:03
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    In my universe, if people call a restaurant's food catnip, the health inspectors might get called in... (yes, though not 'catfood')
    – smci
    May 22, 2019 at 14:44
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I think "draw card" is probably the closest common phrase. "Drawcard" if you want a single world. Dictionary definition:

a quality or feature that evokes interest or liking; an attraction.

In this case one might say

For me, the draw card of [xyz restaurant] is their sumptuous ravioli.

By itself "draw card" would, in my experience, suggest that people in general would find it attractive, so qualifying it as a "personal draw card" would specify that it's your favourite dish.

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    Hi, Artelius. Could you supply quotes and attributed references ... answers on ELU are preferred when supported by such, even when they're quite obviously correct. And I agree, your answer sounds more natural than most others, so +1. May 21, 2019 at 11:04
  • Good thinking - good answer
    – Fattie
    May 22, 2019 at 17:34
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When there may be more than one thing that is attractive but we want to point out the most attractive thing, we often use main attraction:

The main attraction at Yellowstone Park is Old Faithful. (Oxford US)
The main attraction at Giverny is Monet's garden. (Oxford)

I think that would work well here too:

The main attraction for me at this restaurant is their sumptuous ravioli.

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  • 1
    I suppose you could also use pièce de résistance May 21, 2019 at 18:23
  • @micahhoover : "pièce de résistance" doesn't remind me of anything in French. closest match is "plat de résistance", which just mean the main meal, and says nothing about the appeal one of the menu option has on the speaker.
    – sylvainulg
    May 22, 2019 at 7:38
  • "attraction" works for Yellowstone or Giverny because it may mean "An entertainment that is offered to the public" [wordwebonline.com/search.pl?w=attraction] , which obviously doesn't work for Raviolis.
    – sylvainulg
    May 22, 2019 at 7:40
  • @sylvainulg Old Faithful isn't "entertainment" either, other than in a very loose definition of the word that would also work for ravioli. I would just say that the reason attraction can work for ravioli is that it's something that attracts :) May 22, 2019 at 7:50
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The single word for "the thing that attracts" (as opposed to describing the attraction itself) is:

Attractant

https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/attractant

Most examples of this word usage are for the chemical substance produced by insects to attract each other: however it may be used in a general sense also.

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