Close, but no cigar
Also found in: Acronyms.
close but no cigar
A phrase said when one is almost correct or successful but ultimately fails. Cigars were once commonly used as prizes or awards. You all had some very good guesses—close but no cigar.
Close, but no cigar.
Cliché Some effort came close to succeeding, but did not succeed. (Alludes to not quite winning a cigar as a prize.) Jill: How did you do in the contest? Jane: Close, but no cigar. I got second place.
Close, but no cigar(klos...)
phr. Close, but not close enough to win a prize! Close, but no cigar! Give it another try.