Dairy scientist Paul McNeely
conducts a taste test

Years ago, NPR interviewed Jonah Lehrer, who gave interviewer Robert Krulwich a history of the understanding of the basic tastes.

Greek philosopher Democritus is credited with the first thoughts about the basic tastes, and it is interesting to see how the ancient concepts about tastes continues through food myth today.

A friend of mine recently sent me the link again to the story, and I wanted to share it again with you.

Sweet, Sour, Salty, Bitter…And Umami

Even more recently is the exploration into the effect of fat beyond just the the experience of flavor and taste but into an independent bodily response to its presence in food. Australian sensory scientists suggest that fat should be considered a 6th taste, because fatty acids trigger a specific fatty acid receptor on the tongue that results in an eventual neurotransmitter release and response to the fat that goes beyond perception of aroma or flavor.

Listen to NPR’s interview of one of the researchers.

Salty, Sweet, Sour. Is It Time To Make Fat The Sixth Taste?

What do you think? Isn’t it time to elevate fat to a 6th taste?