#AceFoodNews – Nov.16 – Apart from the chemical changes that happen on the soda because of it’s package, an often overlooked aspect about taste is that it’s a complex sense. It’s not just your taste buds giving you what you ultimately experience as taste: its smell (it’s not always the same as its taste), temperature and texture also add to the experience, as well as anything else going on on your mind at the time.
Get two bottles, one plastic and one glass, and put them on a freezer. Once out, they’ll be roughly the same temperature, but the glass will probably feel colder.
Plastic is not that great of a termal conductor, while glass is better at it. Hence, when you place your lips on the plastic bottle, it does not feel as cold because it does not take as much heat from your lips as the glass bottle would do. And as we all know, when it comes to soda colder is always better.
Smell is also affected by the material of choice for your packaging. Plastic tends to trap more the smell (I’m guessing it’s more porous so trapping the small particles is easier) while glass gives you a smoother sniff.
Every single thing going on in your mind at any given moment alters your perceptions. What you ultimately perceive and cannot describe with words (your qualia) are a result of a very complex and unique set of phenomena. Sounds, images, sensations, smells and tastes are all altered by each other all the time.
EDIT: English is hard. Latin is too. Also, as some of you have pointed out, glass is a bad conductor. I just pointed out that glass is BETTER than most plastics at it. The point of this is that what you ultimately experience as taste is not just the chemical compounds of whatever it is you’re tasting; it’s how you PERCEIVE them, from how they interact with your tongue, nose, skin, etc. to how you process (mostly subconsciously) the whole situation.