In my old age, I’ve become something of a cook and now enjoy food much more, as I am able to produce meals that have a lot of taste. But it begs the obvious question, what is taste, what is the taste of food? If you think about it for a moment, it comes down to the tongue’s reaction to the chemicals in food. The tongue — this magical organ with its taste buds — plays the pivotal roll, especially the very tip of the tongue.
And the more you get your tongue involved in each morsel of food, the greater the intensity of the taste of that food. So it is actually possible to increase that intensity by slowing the chewing process and lengthening the amount of time the tongue has to twirl and savor the food.
And then there is something called the “aftertaste”. It is literally the lingering taste of the food after you have swallowed it. The mouth and tongue are still slightly coated with that taste so there is this faint but discernible aftertaste. How many gourmets, instead of rushing on to the next bite mindlessly, take the time to enjoy this aftertaste? Many? Any?
The bottom line about taste is to eat more slowly so that you let your tongue do it what does so well…and don’t forget that hint of the taste in the aftertaste. So mindful eating is the way to go if you can manage it — to get even more taste.