March Swansea Science Cafe: Molecular Gastronomy

The Swansea Science Cafe offers opportunities for anyone to find out more about new, exciting and topical areas of science. Designed to be informal and entertaining, the cafe typically runs on the last Wednesday of every month at the Dylan Thomas Centre. Entry is free and talks start at 7:30pm.

Title: Molecular Gastronomy: the science of taste and flavour

Speaker: Professor Peter Barham, Bristol University


Date: Wednesday 21st March 2012

Time: 7.30pm

Venue: The Dylan Thomas Centre, Swansea

Admission: Free, all welcome


¿Event summary: In this month’s lecture Professor Barham will be attempting to answer questions such asWhat gives food its flavour”? “What makes some foods taste really good while others can be mediocre or even disgusting”?

Through a series of practical demonstrations he will look at how far science can go in answering these and other questions that are so important for domestic cooks and chefs alike.

Participants will discover that we actually use all our senses to assess the food we eat:

  •     we use our eyes to see the colour, shape and size
  •     our ears to hear any sizzling, or crackling
  •     our hands to feel the texture
  •     our tongues to sense the taste
  •     our noses to sense the aroma
  •     and all the nerves in our mouths to assess the “mouthfeel”

In practice, all these sensations are integrated into what is called the “flavour” , the diner then decides whether or not they like it.

Professor Barham will also show how collaborations between scientists and chefs are opening up new worlds of novel and delicious food and taste combinations.

This news item has been posted for the Swansea Science Cafe by Katy Drane, Swansea University Public Relations Office, Tel: 01792 295050, or email: k.drane@swansea.ac.uk