lick at

lick at something

to draw the tongue over something repeatedly. Jimmy was just licking at the ice-cream cone, and soon it began to melt and drip off his elbow. I don't just lick at the ice cream. I take big bites of it.
See also: lick
References in classic literature ?
She went straight to the church, stole to the pot of fat, began to lick at it, and licked the top of the fat off.
Thus, the maximum number of birds on the lick at any one time was substantially less than the total number of birds in the area.
Sociality of parrot species on the clay lick at Tambopata Research Center, Peru during 20 mornings from December 2002 to January 2003.
Bucks will paw, gnaw, and lick at anything you coat with the new BlackMagic[TM] Insta-Lick formula from Evolved Habitats[R].
IN CHARGE: Linden Kitson, the managing director of Lick at Elland