Expressing preferences

There are various ways to say that you like something:

  • Verb + gern (literally “gladly” or “willingly”)

Ich spiele gern Tennis.

I like playing tennis.

Ich lese gern Bücher.

I like reading books.

  • mögen (to like) mögen, Präsens + am liebsten (best)

Ich mag am liebsten Rockmusik.

I like rock music most of all.

Ich mag am liebsten Pizza.

I like pizza best.

  • gefallen (literally “to please”) gefallen, Präsens or schmecken (to taste) schmecken, Präsens + dative Dativ + am besten (best)

Das Dessert schmeckt mir am besten.

I like the dessert the best (literally “the dessert tastes best to me”)

Das blaue Kleid gefällt der Kundin am besten.

The customer likes the blue dress the best (literally “the blue dress pleases the customer best”).

  • Other ways of expressing a strong preference include using lieben (to love) or Lieblings- (favorite) + noun:

Ich liebe Reisen.

I love traveling.

Das ist mein Lieblingsbuch.

That's my favorite book.

Welche ist deine Lieblingsstadt?

What's your favorite city?

Note: if we want to say we don't like something, we just add nicht or kein.

Ich singe nicht gern.

I don't like singing.

Das Kleid gefällt mir nicht.

I don't like the dress.

Ich mag keine Oliven. 

I don't like olives.

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