The role of the sense of smell in perceiving flavour
Choose four different kinds of fruit juice (e.g. orange, apple, peach, apricot).
Pour a glass of each juice.
Pour water into a fifth glass.
Ask someone to close their eyes, take a sip from one of the four glasses of juice and guess the flavour.
Get them to rinse their mouth with water before tasting each of the other three kinds of juice.
Is it easy to identify the flavours?
Repeat the experiment, this time asking them to pinch their nose as they taste each juice.
Is it easier or harder to identify the flavours?
Your tongue can only recognise tastes such as the sweetness of an apple, but some foodstuffs taste similar. Your nose that helps you distinguish between them. The sense of smell therefore plays a key role, enabling us to recognise and enjoy food.