Episode 165: In Good Taste

Flavor ad

1950s ad from the Givaudan Flavorist. Image courtesy of the Society of Flavor Chemists Library at Monell Chemical Senses Center.

Little known fact: we have taste buds all over our bodies, not just our tongues. Another surprise? Our taste buds might play a role in more than just our processing of taste. On today's show producer Mary Harris visits the Monell Chemical Senses Center and Beverly Tepper's sensory evaluation lab at Rutgers University to find out if she is one of the lucky few whose super-taster status affords them better health. Then we welcome Nadia Berenstein to the studio to discuss her research on the early days of synthetic flavor development. She reveals how a cadre of early flavorists changed our very perception of familiar flavors like pineapple.

Show Clock

00:00 Opening Credits
00:41 'A World of Pure Imagination'
01:23 Super-Tasters
08:04 The Art of Imitation Flavors
15:40 Closing Credits


Special thanks to Mary Harris and Jennifer Dionisio for researching this show. 

Our theme music is composed by Andrew Chalfen. Additional music includes "Sugar on My Tongue," by the Talking Heads, and "You Got Good Taste," by the Cramps. Movie clip from "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory."

Image courtesy of the Society of Flavor Chemists Library at Monell Chemical Senses Center.

Posted In: History | Medicine | Society | Technology

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