Talk:Umami

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No translation?[edit]

"umami has no translation"

But the lead paragraph mentions its translation ("savoriness").

In fact, why isn't the main title of this English Wikipedia page "Savoriness"?

151.151.16.10 (talk) 21:51, 18 April 2012 (UTC)

“Savoriness” is an attempt to translate “umami”. It’s not a good translation. The meaning of “savory” is much broader than “umami” and in general is not used synonymously. Strebe (talk) 17:06, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

Then why do all references to savory redirect to this page? Also why, if savory is the broader - and roughly 700 years older - term, is it being redirected to a more specific subcategory of itself?

The definition of umami sounds like someone reinvented wheel, only 30% smaller. With an "untranslatable" Japanese name. This page should be rewritten, with umami itself being a part of an article about savory. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 84.153.67.140 (talk) 11:49, 7 June 2012 (UTC)

“Then why do all references to savory redirect to this page?”
• What are all these references?
I was directed here from Sweetbread. I think I ended up here from an article about yeast extracts (Marmite, Vegemite), as well. This umami business sounds pretentious!giggle 16:47, 19 March 2013 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Gregory.george.lewis (talkcontribs)
Then I suggest you eliminate the link to “savory” in the Sweetbread article. It does not sound appropriate. Strebe (talk) 17:38, 19 March 2013 (UTC)
“Also why, if savory is the broader - and roughly 700 years older - term, is it being redirected to a more specific subcategory of itself?”
• Because “savoriness” outside the context of umami is not well defined and not an encyclopædic topic. People are unlikely to be looking for an article on the broader term “savoriness” just as they are unlikely to be looking for an article on “deliciousness”. Meanwhile because umami is often (unnecessarily) translated as “savoriness”, people looking for an article on savoriness are likely looking for umami.
The definition of umami sounds like someone reinvented wheel, only 30% smaller.
• No, the definition of umami sounds like someone got some science involved by discovering that there is a basic human taste receptor for umami, one of only five known basic receptors. There is no basic human taste receptor for the poorly defined “savoriness”.
“This page should be rewritten, with umami itself being a part of an article about savory.”
• There is nothing encyclopædic to be said about “savoriness”. Its dictionary definition suffices. Wikipedia is not a dictionary. Strebe (talk) 20:48, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
Excellent question, which is exactly what brought me to the Talk page. I clicked on the link to "savory" from an article about sweetbread, and it brought me here...rather weasily, in my view. If I want to know about "umami", I would like to click on it from within the "savory" article. The lede question of this talk section has not been satisfactorily answered. If savory is a broad subject, then it is encyclopedic. If umami is synonymous with savory, then that should be stated in the article about savory.giggle 16:40, 19 March 2013 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Gregory.george.lewis (talkcontribs)
“Weasily”? Why would you assume bad intent? Someone casually linked. Unlink it. Savory is not a “broad topic”; the word simply has a broader meaning than umami but is not encyclopædic because there is no substantial literature on the topic and it is not well defined. Umami is well defined and has a body of literature and scientific research. There is no article on “savory”.Strebe (talk) 17:38, 19 March 2013 (UTC)

Umami is a marketing term and the actual closest english translation of the term is "good taste," not "savoriness." This article is full of factual errors and presents half-truths as fact.

If you have any specific changes you would like to suggest or if there are specific items you feel are half-truths it would be helpful if you noted them here. Deli nk (talk) 21:58, 14 February 2015 (UTC)

Genetics of ability to taste umami[edit]

Does anyone here have the expertise to add a section on genetic variation in the ability to taste umami? If not, I could probably do this; I'm a geneticist but of plants and fungi, not humans, but I should be able to understand the scientific papers on genetics of umami tasting. Declaration of personal interest: I think this section is significant because I'm a non-taster. Please post on my talk page if you think this is worthwhile. OldSpot61 (talk) 16:49, 10 February 2015 (UTC)

Be bold! Strebe (talk) 22:03, 10 February 2015 (UTC)

Foods rich in umami[edit]

You usually don't list food rich in saltiness/sweetness. Are you sure you are still talking about a taste rather than an ingredient? There should be a difference. --2.245.110.69 (talk) 13:09, 24 May 2015 (UTC)

third paragraph of lede[edit]

The current contents of the lede's third paragraph is this:

People taste umami through receptors for glutamate, commonly found in its salt form as the food additive monosodium glutamate (MSG).[1] For that reason, scientists consider umami to be distinct from saltiness.[2]

For which reason is it distinct from saltiness? It's distinct from saltiness because it's found in its salt form? Or because it's MSG instead of NaCl? I looked at the reference provided--an NPR article--but that article isn't covering the explanation. I propose that the resolution should be to remove the second sentence altogether (but keep the reference, if it remains in context) or to improve the segue from the first sentence by identifying the reason. (Apparently I left this unsigned?) D. F. Schmidt (talk) 15:31, 10 December 2015 (UTC)

The “salt” in “salt form” is not the same salt as salt taste. I have added a link to help clarify this. Does this help? I don’t know if some further wording changes would also help. It reads fine to me but I can see how the two meanings of salt could be confused.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 21:50, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
I appreciate your effort, but what I'm suggesting is that saltiness be replaced with a more succinct word. (I already knew that salt is a chemical term and I knew what the salt form is.) Since this is already a somewhat esoteric topic anyway (umami and monosodium glutamate are not traditional English words), I'm not sure I know a more appropriate word or wording to replace saltiness, but maybe include mention that the chloride in table salt has different receptors with which we associate "saltiness". Using the word saltiness in a discussion of two chemical salts sounds like it's dumbing things down to a useless level. D. F. Schmidt (talk) 15:31, 10 December 2015 (UTC)
I agree the paragraph was awkward and misleading (or even leading: why did it focus on saltiness as a contrast?). I rewrote it. Feel free to improve. Strebe (talk) 17:14, 10 December 2015 (UTC)

lede sentence re kanji[edit]

Second paragraph had:

"This particular writing was chosen by Japanese chemist Kikunae Ikeda from umai (うまい) "delicious" and mi (味) "taste". The kanji 旨味 are used for a more general sense of a food as delicious."

How do (or does) kanji relate to the previous sentence? If adding this info back, please tie it in to the rest of the paragraph. As things stand it reads as irrelevant and very awkward.

references[edit]

  1. ^ "Umami taste receptor identified". Nature. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  2. ^ Sweet, Sour, Salty, Bitter ... and Umami, NPR