Taste and aftertaste in wine

When we taste a wine, we are flooded with a cascade of taste sensations, but we must bear in mind that when we taste any food, other senses are involved in addition to taste and, in addition, the sapid sensations unfold in different phases that make up what we know as the taste of wine.
The mouth is a polysensory organ since, in addition to the tongue and its taste buds, it also sends olfactory sensations to the nose through the throat and has touch, which allows us to differentiate sensations such as temperature, alcohol or volume of the wine.
The first thing to note is that taste and flavor are different concepts. Taste is a sense that is formed in the mouth, while flavor is the union of several senses simultaneously, basically taste and smell.
When we taste a wine, the different flavors almost always follow one after the other in the same order. First the sweet flavors appear, then the acidic and, finally, the bitter ones. And in turn, they disappear inversely. That is, first we stop perceiving bitter tastes, then acidic and finally sweet tastes.
For this reason, we usually differentiate between different stages in the tastings:
1-The entry or attack: at first, sweet and acidic flavors are the most noticeable. It lasts between two to three seconds and sugary substances and alcohol are more important in this phase.
2-Evolution stage: in this stage, salty and bitter sensations are distinguished. Sugar flavors are reduced and it lasts from five to ten seconds.
3-Post-taste: during this phase pseudo-tactile sensations and indirect aromatics (aromas that pass to the nose through our mouth) are perceived.
4-Retrotaste: generally only generates aromatic sensations. It is given when we have already ingested the wine and refers to the sensations it leaves in our mouth. It is the final impression of the tasting and is highly influenced by both the smell and the effects of wine intake on the mucous membrane. It can last between eight and twelve seconds.
Thus, when we refer to the aftertaste or aftertaste of a wine, we are referring to the sensations that remain in the throat and nostrils after drinking the wine.
The taste of a wine is the sensation it generates in the mouth, while the aftertaste is the flavor that remains of that wine. For this reason, it is important to know how to differentiate the different flavors that unfold when tasting wine, and to nuance the sensations that linger after drinking it.

Leave a Reply