Serious Eats: Talk
Fat as a 6th flavour?
While surfing the nets I came across this bit of news - forgive me if I'm late to the party. (link here)
Scientists claim that they have found individuals with a consistent ability to distinguish a fatty solution compared to one without the fatty acids. What I'm curious or perhaps confused about is this: does one taste fat, or are we merely able to discern it based on mouthfeel? I personally get a parched throat when eating fatty things, so the idea of flavour for me is moot (I would know there was fat dissolved based on my dinky throat).
I've thought the consensus is that fat is a carrier for flavour, and many purified forms of fat carry flavours from their sources.
Or perhaps I'm wrong - most 'flavours' go beyond sweet, salty, sour and bitter, and salt is an amplifier for flavours and not a flavour itself, so it follows that fat may both have a flavour and carry flavour?
Do you think fat itself has a flavour on its own? Can you taste fat alone, and what does it taste like to you?