This is a Popular Science experiment.
We’re here to see if an apple can taste like an onion.
I was reading a book—Flavor by Bob Holmes.
One of the things that Bob Holmes goes into
is the difference between flavor and taste.
Taste is chemosensory.
It’s sort of the play of chemicals on our tongue.
想想 “咸” “甜” “酸”
Think ‘salt’ or ‘sweet’ or ‘sour.’
Flavor is the whole.
包括口味 气味 气氛 质地等
It’s taste, it’s smell, it’s ambiance, it’s texture—
It’s everything put together.
To see if an apple can taste like an onion,
I’m going to cover my eyes so I can’t see anything
and I’m going to plug my nose so I can’t smell anything.
And then our lovely assistant Tom is going to
bring over slices of onions and apples,
and I’m going to try and guess which is an onion and which is an apple.
I’m a sample size of one.
The two other testers are going to be
PopSci staffers Billy and Mark.
Smell makes up a huge proportion of what we taste,
what we consider to be flavor.
But on the other hand, onions are just so pungent.
It’s hard to believe that you can confuse an onion with an apple.
好的 我戴上眼罩 吃了一块苹果
Well I put on the blindfold and consumed an apple
and knew it was an apple,
and then I consumed an onion
and knew it was an onion.
The fact that there was this experiment made me want to believe it
but the two tastes are very different.
There are two kinds of smelling—
one is orthonasal and the other is retronasal.
Orthonasal is what you smell when you sniff a flower—
what comes through your nose.
And that’s what I blocked off.
But retronasal comes from the back of your throat,
and it wasn’t until it hit the back of my throat that I could really tell it was an onion.
In the beginning, it was sort of sweet
and it was really confusing with the apple,
but once it hit the back of my throat, there was just no confusing the two.
It was definitely an onion.
Oh, that was awful![laughs]