Parotid salivary flow rates were measured in 10-12 subjects who tasted wines and aqueous solutions containing single and multiple combinations of selected constituents of the wines. Flow rates were significantly less (p<0.001) in response to commercial Chenin blanc and Pinot noir than to aqueous solutions containing tartaric acid in the same concentration found in the wines. Salivation was greatest for tartaric acid, followed by tannin, ethanol, or added sucrose. Addition of 11% ethanol significantly depressed salivary responses to tartaric acid in the model systems, in agreement with the masking effects of ethanol on the sour taste of acid, observed in behavioral studies. The potency of tartaric acid in producing salivary flow was lower in the wines than in the model systems, probably because of the buffering capacity of the wine in addition to the ethanol content. The results demonstrate the potential use of salivary flow measurement as an analytical technique in the sensory evaluation of foods and beverages.
- Copyright 1978 by the American Society for Enology and Viticulture