Like a good wine, tastebuds mature with age

Ella Hickman and Zita Czigany toast to their taste buds. Photo Vicki Wood / Caboolture News
Ella Hickman and Zita Czigany toast to their taste buds. Photo Vicki Wood / Caboolture News Vicki Wood/sin231112taste2

FOOD is a big part of our lives and we couldn't survive without it.

To keep life interesting, different flavours appeal to different tastebuds. But most people don't eat the same thing throughout their lives.

A new survey from Roaming Cow Dairies has revealed our tastes change as we get older.

Zita Czigany, 53, and Ella Hickman, 23, have both noticed changes in their tastes.

"I think it changes all the time," Zita said. "When you're young, you tend to eat the basic foods and as you get older your choices lean towards food you weren't exposed to, you might go to fancier restaurants because food tastes good and you become aware of other food varieties.

"I also think food has to grow on you."

Ella admitted she noticed big changes in her taste and food choices in the past five years.

"For example, when I first started drinking, I would go for the sweet wine," she said. "But now I tend to drink more dry wine and I never used to drink coffee at all... so, I'm more willing to try different things."

The research showed older people had a more "discerning palate" and would most likely avoid things like artificial ingredients.

"I avoid pre-prepared foods and try to eat more natural foods, like meat and vegetables and cheese, and I make things like pasta sauce from scratch," Zita said.

"I'm the exact opposite, it's pre-prepared food all the way. it's easy," Ella said.

Although our tastes change, it doesn't mean you won't like something in five years. With practice, you can train your palate.

Top Taste Tips

From Chris Barnes (wine educator and palate expert)

1. Give it a go - you won't know until you try.

2. Fewer ingredients doesn't equal less taste - in fact, it is usually the reverse.

3. Breathe deep - flavour is also about smell and the messages your brain receives when you eat. Try letting the air circulate in your mouth and notice the difference.

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