Professional coffee tasters (Cuppers) use a term to describe flavors detected by the tongue – Basic tastes and flavors detected through the nose – secondary taste (secondary tastes).
The essential tastes of Sweet, Sour, Salty, Bitter, and Umami are perceived by the “taste buds” located on our tongues, each containing between 50 and 100 taste cells and each cell. Taste has receptors. However, in the coffee tasting practice environment, there are only four primary flavors: Sweet, Sour, Salty, Bitter, which are “really means in terms of taste” and interact with each other (as well as with different flavors). In your coffee.
Through a process known as taste regulation, the primary taste sensations interact with each other, depending on the relative strength. In a cup of coffee, there are six possible combinations. Sweet, sour, and salt interact and form the following combinations:
- Acids increase the sweetness of sugar – sour (acidy)
- Salt enhances the sweetness of sugar – mellow
- Sugar reduces the bad taste of acids – winey
- Sugar reduces the saltiness of the salt – bland
- Acid increases the salinity of salt – sharp (sharp)
- Salt lowers the sour taste of acid – bad (sour)