bitter, tangy, spicy, each taste with its own particular flavor.
Our taste buds are the nerve cells that help us determine
the haunting, familiar, or nasty taste from our food. From helping
us make that special dish for family and friends, or avoiding a
possible poison, our taste buds consistently serve us.
cells located on surface of several papillae, which cover
the tongue, palate, epiglottis, and pharynx, help
us to determine the flavor of our food.
taste cell consists of small hairs that lie in the taste
pore. There, dissolved food or drink binds to a receptor,
like a key in a lock. If the key fits, then the taste cell sends a
signal to the brain, telling it that this morsel is
sweet, salty, sour, or bitter (the four basic types
of taste cells).
As you already know, there are thousands, perhaps millions of flavors
(tastes), but how could that be with only four types of taste
buds? The vast combinations and strengths of each contribute
to those vast numbers. Even if each of the basic flavors always
had equal strengths, there still would be 256 different flavors.
But with a hint of sour, a dash sweet, a pinch of bitter, that number
increases to a gastronomical feast.
To read more about the sense of taste and smell, read In
The Realm of the Chemical.