Flavour? Just what does flavour mean?

Taste or gustatory perception is the sensory impression of food or other substances by the taste buds on the tongue. But the signals to the brain, or the sensations induced by food, are far more complex than the influx coming from our taste buds.

Physical sensations (colour, temperature, texture) and chemical sensations (chemical irritants in the mouth and throat) are the “trigeminal senses” and play a major role. However, olfaction or the sense of smell is far more important in the sensory impression of food.

Flavour includes all these perceptions and is the term used in the sensory analysis of food to describe the organoleptic properties of food products. It’s also the term favoured by gourmet food lovers.

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Wikipedia. Flavor.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. 2014. Maple Syrup Flavour.

Waverman, Lucy, and Beppi Crosariol. 2013. The Flavour Principle. Harper Collins Canada.

Segnit, Niki. 2012. The Flavor Thesaurus: A Compendium of Pairings, Recipes and Ideas for the Creative Cook. Bloomsbury USA.

Smith, Barry. 2012. Perspective: Complexities of flavour. Nature 486, S6 (21 June 2012).

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