If you watched Mondovino, you know that Robert Parker is a Supertaster and has his palate insured for one million dollars. OK then, what is a Supertaster? It’s a person who's more sensitive to tastes than others because of a higher density of papillae on their tongue. According to studies conducted since the 1930’s approximately 25% of all people are supertasters, 50% regular tasters and 25% non tasters.
I first read about this in Jennifer Rosen’s entertaining article Taste Test. More recently it was referred to in Jamie Goode’s excellent new book Wine Science. I couldn’t wait any longer.
To test yourself, you’ll need:
I counted 27, so I’m a regular taster. Damn! The picture on the right isn't a bunch of botrytised grapes; it’s a 7mm diameter part of my tongue with blue food coloring on it. To find out more about supertasters go to the BBC’s Science and Nature.