Retronasal olfactory taste

This is a very fancy scientific term for what us mortals call tasting. Retronasal olfactory tasting is the part of tasting that you don’t do with your tongue but with taste receptors in your nasal cavity. It’s the part of tasting that gives you complexity, and that makes you taste the difference between an apple and a onion.

Rating: out of 10

Cork taint

Cork taint is something that’s usually associated with wines, but it can happen in any kind of spirit. In cork tainting, the cork itself is tainted and not the spirit.

Cork tainting does not mean your drink tastes of cork because there’s bits and pieces of it floating around. Corked spirits tastes off because of the presence of a chemical called TCA (2,4,6-trichloroanisole) that is produced by fungi in the cork.

The effects of cork tainting are unmistakable. A heavilly corked whisky will smell of damp cellar or wet dog, rendering it undrinkable.

Rating: out of 10