Course: Understanding Wine
your sense of taste
Tastes in Wine: Sweet, Tart and Bitter
In contrast to the enormous number of aromas, there are only four tastes. They are sweet, sour (or tart), bitter and salty. Since salt does not normally occur in wine, we need to focus on only three tastes:
Sweetness comes from sugars and alcohol
Tartness comes from acids
Bitterness is caused by tannins, which are found primarily in red wines
The sensation of taste is perceived by taste buds, which, for the most part, are located on your tongue. The taste buds are undifferentiated, meaning that each bud senses all the tastes. The net result is that you can taste sour, bitter and sweet anywhere on your tongue.
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