ADV.02 Understanding the Organoleptic Experience
This class is an in-depth exploration of both how we experience tea and what we experience. The ‘how’ begins with the anatomy of our organoleptic system, the tools we use to perceive tea on every level. Then we look at how the chemistry of tea ‘colors’ our experience, as well as examining some general principles concerning flavor. Next, there is an explanation of how we sense bitterness, astringency and sweetness in tea, and how they are (surprisingly) related. The last week of class identifies the compounds in tea and the roles they play in creating the flavor of tea. The course author is Virginia Utermohlen Lovelace MD. Click here to read her bio.
- Describe the anatomy and function of the human organoleptic system.
2. Understand the relationship between tea’s chemical make-up and our experience of tea.
3. Know how and why we can modulate a tea’s flavor, enhancing certain flavors and diminishing others.
4. Know why people tasting the same tea can have very different experiences.
5. Identify various compounds that are the flavors, mouthfeel and colors of tea.
You will need to order your class kit no later than close of registration:
• Required class kits are not included in your purchase for your course
• Class kits need to be ordered from Elmwood Inn Fine Teas
• Go to Elmwood Inn’s World Tea Academy page to purchase kit* (You need to order your kit no later than one week before your class starts to ensure that you receive it in time.)
Please Note: International students that plan on taking more than one course with World Tea Academy will save money on the shipping costs of their class kits if they order multiple kits at a time.
Students will need to supply the following additional materials BEFORE the class starts. These are not included in the class kit:
• Three professional cupping sets
• An instant read thermometer
• A digital gram scale
• A timer
• A strainer or infuser that will fit into the bowl of your cupping set
3 weeks (plus one week grace period to submit assignments and complete any tests.)
*Disclaimer: Elmwood Inn Fine Teas is not part of World Tea Academy/Questex LLC nor is it affiliated World Tea Academy/Questex LLC. World Tea Academy/Questex LLC has partnered with Elmwood Inn Fine Teas only to provide the class kits for our courses.
- Welcome to Your Class
- Course Author Virginia Utermohlen Lovelace
- Understanding the Organoleptic Experience
- Defining Organoleptic Experience
- Anatomy of the Organoleptic System
- How Smell, Taste, and Flavor Work
- ADV.02 Assignment 1.1
- Week 1 Classroom Assignment
- End of Week 1 Quiz Instructions
- End of Week 1 Quiz
- Section One: Color, Bitterness, Astringency, Sweetness, Umami, and Mouthfeel
- Section Two: General Principles Concerning How We Perceive Flavor
- Section Three: Bitterness, Astringency, Sweetness, and Umami
- ADV.02 Assignment 2.1
- ADV.02 Assignment 2.2
- Week 2 Classroom Assignment
- End of Week 2 Quiz Instructions
- End of Week 2 Quiz
- Overview: Types of Flavors in Teas and Some of the Compounds that Contribute to Them
- Section One: Introduction
- Section Two: Green Flavors and Green Teas
- Section Three: Brown Flavors and Black Teas
- Section Four: Predominant Flavor Families
- ADV.02 Assignment 3.1
- ADV.02 Assignment 3.2
- Week 3 Classroom Assignment
- Final Exam
We offer this class in April and August 2021.
See Class Schedule Page for registration and start dates.
ChristopherMay 01, 2021
I really enjoyed this course and finding out how seasoning such as salt and rosemary can change the experience of drinking each tea.
ChristinaNov 24, 2019
One of the best advanced courses that I have taken and very well planned out.
JamesMar 31, 2019
This class was very informative. I really enjoyed the videos as they were very helpful understanding the chemical compounds in the tea. Also enjoyed using the Tea Flavor Templates
BrendaJul 27, 2018
Understanding a little more about the biology and chemistry behind our sensory system has given me more confidence in my tea cupping. Now I know why I taste what I taste and realize that even though there is no right or wrong when it comes to cupping, there are some general tastes that will emerge due to the chemical make up of the tea. The flavor template assignments were real eye openers - they really reinforced the lessons.
PatriciaJul 25, 2018
I so enjoyed this course because we discover the science based explanations of why we experience what we do when we see, smell, taste tea!
DianeJul 21, 2018
This course had quite a lot of chemistry which was challenging. Overall, the course material was very interesting and definitely enlightening as to why we taste what we do and how we all taste differently. Excellent course material and really fun exercises as part of the assignments.
DonnaLeeJan 21, 2018
Even for a person who already has had two years of education also in this subject you've made it an interesting course as you approached it from the biochemical side of things. I thought that this one would be one of the easiest to do. But again you've managed to teach an old fox some new tricks. Thank you very much.
JerrySep 27, 2017
A challenging and very interesting class that has advanced my understanding considerably.
DoniSep 25, 2017
This course really helped with understanding tastes and smells to do with tea. I kept thinking it would have been helpful to know some of this content while I was tasting some teas in the CORE courses.
ManishSep 18, 2017
Really a great class. This Organoleptic course is applicable to tea and beyond. Thanks!
LoriJun 30, 2017
Wonderful course! I came away with a much better understanding of how we experience tea, and what to pay attention to in cupping and in drinking tea. This will definitely enhance my ability of distinguish between teas and express the differences to others.
soniaJun 27, 2017
Very informative! Loved the exercises!
HeatherJun 26, 2017
Learned so much from this course!
GeorgiaJun 25, 2017
When you sip a tea, the process your body goes through to experience flavor is explained in an understandable and interesting way.
CarrieJun 22, 2017
This was by far the most intimidating course from the beginning. But slowly my fear of anatomy and chemistry gave way to a fascination with, well, everything I taste and smell. I am still reeling from material that - while not over my head - certainly made me think. I expect to return to this content for quite a while, as it all settles in. And I am grateful to have found a new area of amazing discoveries and understanding. No glass of wine or tea will be the same. Everyone should take this course.
ChristinaMar 29, 2017
I really enjoyed this course. It just brought the whole tea experience of how we taste tea full circle. The videos were great and helped tie everything together. The tea flavor templates were fun to use and really made you think about how the tea sits on the palate.
Donna Dec 06, 2016
Very interesting course that made me really rethink flavours and tasting. I found the video classes especially useful alongside the written material as I am not a chemist and they helped me understand the subject more easily.I feel more confident now and have the tools to expand on tea tasting and the reasons behind those flavours. A great course!
DorothyDec 02, 2016
One of the best in this series of courses. Very helpful to understand & expand my sensory vocabulary. Thoroughly enjoyed it and the Tea Flavor Template was a fun way to compare & contrast not just teas - but other foods,
SofiaMay 29, 2016
As with the Adv 04 BioChemistry course, this is challenging information to wrap your head around, but also vitally important. The more we are able to understand about how the mechanisms of taste and smell work, the better equiped we are to guide the public within the realms of tea and tisanes.
DavidMay 28, 2016
What a wonderful class , well structured and very informative content! Well done!
MichaelFeb 19, 2016
MaurizioOct 31, 2015
Knowing how to describe what we taste is an important skill - it helps us appreciate all food and drink. Overall, I found this course very helpful. The Tea Flavor Template and the exercises provided very practical ways to describe what we taste and the course material that explaining how we taste was eye opening.
Joseph S.Feb 21, 2015