HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >

Your favorite word/expression to describe food/flavors....

calla0413 Jan 26, 2007 03:34 PM

I can't help myself! hehehehe...

I was in an earlier discussion and someone used the word "herby-ness" to describe a flavor. I was really entertained by it.

I'm wondering what words have you used or phrases have you used/heard to describe food/flavors.

One of my personal favorites, I had someone describe a curry dish to me as "nice and sturdy". I was really amused but, knew exactly what they meant.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. jillp RE: calla0413 Jan 26, 2007 03:46 PM

    My mother-in-law had a favorite that I seem to have adopted over the years: refreshing. This usually applies to fruit or a dessert.

    1. r
      RicRios RE: calla0413 Jan 26, 2007 06:55 PM

      One of my favorite Chateauneuf-du-Pape wines, which I really really love, I can't help but associate the bouquet with horse shit. In a positive way, I guess...

      9 Replies
      1. re: RicRios
        Carmelizedbunions RE: RicRios Jan 26, 2007 07:19 PM

        That reminds me of Loire valle white wine that smelled like cat piss. In a good way Iguess..

        1. re: Carmelizedbunions
          AnneInMpls RE: Carmelizedbunions Jan 27, 2007 10:11 PM

          Speaking of that "evocative" Loire wine - ever had Cooper's Creek Sauvignon Blanc? It was a hit at a recent wine tasting I went to, mostly for the name and the label...

          http://www.cooperscreek.co.nz/white_w...&

          Anne

          1. re: AnneInMpls
            SauceSupreme RE: AnneInMpls Jan 28, 2007 03:19 AM

            Camembert and a few red wines that I like all evoke that same smell. While I've heard some sommeliers describe it as a "barnyard" smell, I prefer to use the more sophisticated "earthy" description.

            1. re: SauceSupreme
              Carmelizedbunions RE: SauceSupreme Jan 28, 2007 06:21 AM

              Earthy is a little more of a broad term. Barnyard is quite distintively a smell from the farm and is usually found in red burgandies. When it starts to smell like sewage thats not good, but a little hint of barnyard is or can be a favorable qaulity.

        2. re: RicRios
          JMF RE: RicRios Jan 28, 2007 08:39 AM

          The appropriate term for that taste and smell is "barnyard" And I love it too.

          1. re: RicRios
            b
            ben61820 RE: RicRios Feb 3, 2007 10:34 AM

            i thin k i know what you mean. i usually try to express what youre saying with something like, "it has an earthy quality. reminiscent of soil and grass". not trying to sound pretentious, either, just honestly a lot of things (especially in the single malt booze world) have those qualities. i love it.

            1. re: ben61820
              revsharkie RE: ben61820 Feb 3, 2007 11:11 AM

              ...speaking of single malt...my husband treated himself at Christmas to a bottle of 18-year-old Macallan. The only thing I can say about the taste of it (I'm not really much of a scotch guy) is that it tastes like it was aged in an ashtray.

            2. re: RicRios
              Ljubitca RE: RicRios Feb 5, 2007 05:04 PM

              ahh there you go again..... sigh... horse poop. I guess they are both mangery.

              1. re: RicRios
                CindyJ RE: RicRios Feb 6, 2007 10:49 AM

                I usually refer to that as "barnyard bouquet."

              2. jbyoga RE: calla0413 Jan 26, 2007 07:09 PM

                "It'll change your life!"

                1. luv2bake RE: calla0413 Jan 26, 2007 07:19 PM

                  Not a serious one of mine, but - "It's to die for!" One time, we were dining out, and we had a very enthusiastic, animated waiter who was delighted to give us every detail about the food before ordering. He had a bit of a northeasty accent and for the fish of the day rather than grouper said "groupah." The sentence he gave us, with great enthusiasm, was, "The groupah is ta die fah!"

                  Now we jokingly use that quite often.

                  1. Professor Salt RE: calla0413 Jan 26, 2007 07:21 PM

                    Crackalicious

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Professor Salt
                      Carmelizedbunions RE: Professor Salt Jan 26, 2007 07:55 PM

                      Now would that be something that tastes cracky or something so good you would offer somone a favor to get.

                      1. re: Professor Salt
                        calla0413 RE: Professor Salt Jan 29, 2007 07:24 AM

                        Is that related to Fergielicious?

                        1. re: Professor Salt
                          PseudoNerd RE: Professor Salt Feb 18, 2007 12:05 AM

                          S L Wine describes Black Chook sparkling shiraz (I know, I'm obsessed) as "liquid crack"

                        2. Abacus RE: calla0413 Jan 26, 2007 07:51 PM

                          Brussel Sprouts - FOOD OF THE DEVIL! :)

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Abacus
                            Carmelizedbunions RE: Abacus Jan 26, 2007 07:57 PM

                            Unrelated, I love carmelized brussel sprouts cooked in bacon or pancetta so much i would...... mow your lawn to get some.....crackalicious.

                          2. luv2bake RE: calla0413 Jan 26, 2007 08:44 PM

                            I just made a post and realized a delicious food word I use often - killer!

                            1. jwbarth RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 09:59 AM

                              I hate to admit it, but i've found myself saying "yumm-o", and I can't stand Rachel Ray...

                              7 Replies
                              1. re: jwbarth
                                Harp00n RE: jwbarth Jan 27, 2007 12:15 PM

                                Oh Lord, I know I'll get hammered on this one. Ladies, and yes it's 99.44% ladies, please stop using yum, yummy and yummo-o as some penultimate adjective when the taste buds have been tickled. There's got to be two or maybe even three other pefectly good adjectives that might suffice. Oh, and just don't hit me in the face, okay?

                                1. re: Harp00n
                                  Carmelizedbunions RE: Harp00n Jan 27, 2007 02:25 PM

                                  How about scrumdiddlyumtious, or the sound Homer makes after a douhnut or a ham(sorry dont know how to spell it)

                                  1. re: Carmelizedbunions
                                    Davwud RE: Carmelizedbunions Jan 27, 2007 02:44 PM

                                    Mmmmmm
                                    Ham
                                    auuuggggghhhhhhhh!!!!!!!

                                    DT

                                  2. re: Harp00n
                                    jwbarth RE: Harp00n Jan 27, 2007 02:27 PM

                                    yeah, but "yumm-o" is so funny.

                                    1. re: Harp00n
                                      luv2bake RE: Harp00n Jan 27, 2007 10:06 PM

                                      It always makes me laugh when my friend's husband says yummy. It just sounds so not guy!

                                      1. re: Harp00n
                                        bryan RE: Harp00n Jan 28, 2007 04:24 PM

                                        Well, I'm a woman and I couldn't agree more! So tierd of yummy but yum just sets my teeth on edge. I won't read a post when I see it now.

                                        1. re: bryan
                                          revsharkie RE: bryan Jan 29, 2007 05:09 PM

                                          MIke and I were once at a Chinese restaurant up the street from our house in Portland with my parents and my sister. Since they're all from Kansas they didn't seem to have a clue about pot stickers, so we ordered up a big plateful so they could be properly enlightened. My sister is a bit of a picky eater, so she didn't want to eat them till she knew just what she was eating. So she asked, "What's in them?"

                                          Six-foot-something, bass-voiced, mustache-wearing Mike replied, "Yums are in there!"

                                    2. jwbarth RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 10:02 AM

                                      Jesus, don't hit the "back" arrow after making a post. And trying to erase one doesn't help either. yumm-o yumm-o yumm-o yumm-o yumm-o yumm-o yumm-o yumm-o

                                      1. Veggo RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 10:16 AM

                                        After juicing my citrus, I like to refer to it in the pluperfect subjunctive as "freshly squozen"

                                        1. MC Slim JB RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 10:23 AM

                                          I like to trot out "soigné" to describe a dish that is subtly flavored and elegantly constructed.

                                          My favorite word for atmosphere is the similar sounding but etymologically distinct "swanky".

                                          My favorite word for ponderous words is "sesquipedalian".

                                          1. b
                                            bijoux16 RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 11:23 AM

                                            my mother and I have an unspoken language when it comes to food - last week, I introduced her to Spanakopita for the first time and after the first bite, we just looked at each other with awe, eyes wide open, slight smile, with a quiet "mmmmmm..."
                                            both of us find it hard to verbalize anything coherent when we're in the presence of good food... :)

                                            1. sivyaleah RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 11:56 AM

                                              I can't think of any however, one of my friends uses the word "magnificent" to describe damn near everything she eats. Makes it useless. Everytime she utters the word, I want to gag.

                                              Now, whenever my husband and I dine alone, I'll occassonally say something is "magnificent" just to watch the food fly out of his mouth :-)

                                              1. Sam Fujisaka RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 02:13 PM

                                                "Whell now, If that haint gore-MET, I don know waat is!"

                                                "Thaas suh good, ah caint s**t".

                                                "phhhhhuuuughgh [suck in breath]...mmmMMMMnn...nnnn...o-ISSSHHH-iiii...."

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: Sam Fujisaka
                                                  Davwud RE: Sam Fujisaka Jan 27, 2007 02:45 PM

                                                  So good it makes you wanna slap yo mama!?!?!?!?!

                                                  DT

                                                2. Carmelizedbunions RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 02:27 PM

                                                  Isn't there a culture that belches very loudly to express their gratitude to the chef.

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: Carmelizedbunions
                                                    Davwud RE: Carmelizedbunions Jan 27, 2007 02:46 PM

                                                    My mom doesn't find it very gratuitous.

                                                    DT

                                                    1. re: Davwud
                                                      luv2bake RE: Davwud Jan 27, 2007 10:07 PM

                                                      Yeah, mine, either. When my brother & I were little, we really tried to convince her to adopt that tradition. She didn't go for it.

                                                  2. Davwud RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 02:47 PM

                                                    I don't have a word or anything buy both my wife and sisters know if I've hit on something because they can hear me laughing in the kitchen.

                                                    DT

                                                    1. v
                                                      Val RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 03:45 PM

                                                      "It will ROCK YOUR WORLD." my favorite, says it all.

                                                      My dad used to say "My brains are falling out, this is so delicious!" just had to add that!

                                                      1. Carmelizedbunions RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 04:52 PM

                                                        Maybe we could all come up with a new Rachel Ray word like scrummo, or yummello, scraptacular, slapyomamalo

                                                        5 Replies
                                                        1. re: Carmelizedbunions
                                                          MC Slim JB RE: Carmelizedbunions Jan 28, 2007 08:41 AM

                                                          I would propose "overexposed-o".

                                                          1. re: MC Slim JB
                                                            SauceSupreme RE: MC Slim JB Jan 28, 2007 09:13 AM

                                                            I didn't know you this was a Rachelism-o because I always just ignored her o.

                                                            1. re: SauceSupreme
                                                              Carmelizedbunions RE: SauceSupreme Jan 28, 2007 10:35 AM

                                                              o but she is impossible to ignore-o, jus try an tonight you'll have a dreamo where you are out on a date and every word she says has an o at the end of it.

                                                              1. re: Carmelizedbunions
                                                                Harp00n RE: Carmelizedbunions Jan 28, 2007 11:46 AM

                                                                Could we please, please, please have her utter these finally, final words; "I'm out the door-o!"

                                                                1. re: Carmelizedbunions
                                                                  SauceSupreme RE: Carmelizedbunions Jan 28, 2007 08:29 PM

                                                                  o good god no o

                                                          2. c
                                                            cafesimile RE: calla0413 Jan 27, 2007 05:14 PM

                                                            This guy I work with seems to have a plethora of adjectives (and uses) for the mighty lemon. "A little fresh lemon juice to 'wake up' those flavors" or "Add lemon zest to 'brighten' up that dish" or "The 'zing' of a lemon will balance perfectly with (insert anything that is not a lemon here)". He's a culinary cowboy with citrus and a microplane in his holsters.

                                                            2 Replies
                                                            1. re: cafesimile
                                                              Carmelizedbunions RE: cafesimile Jan 27, 2007 07:19 PM

                                                              The zing of a lemon will balance perfectly with cow brain tacos.

                                                              1. re: Carmelizedbunions
                                                                calla0413 RE: Carmelizedbunions Jan 28, 2007 06:35 AM

                                                                It all sounds so yumm-o.

                                                            2. hrhboo RE: calla0413 Jan 28, 2007 09:23 AM

                                                              I love the words "toothsome" and "mouthfeel".

                                                              1. breadbox RE: calla0413 Jan 28, 2007 05:30 PM

                                                                I am currently stuck on the world "primo," (preemo) as in "Hon, this shrimp scampi you made tonight is primo," or "that tiramisu we had at Spinelli's last night was primo."

                                                                On the other hand, if I am commenting on something that was really bad, I will usually say, "It was absolutely barfy."

                                                                1. SauceSupreme RE: calla0413 Jan 28, 2007 08:31 PM

                                                                  My two favorite words to describe food and drink are "transcendent" and "pedestrian".

                                                                  1. Davwud RE: calla0413 Jan 29, 2007 04:54 AM

                                                                    Last night my 4 year old nephew told my sister her roast tasted like "Poo."

                                                                    DT

                                                                    1. Veggo RE: calla0413 Jan 29, 2007 06:40 AM

                                                                      Fun thread!
                                                                      Another term I enjoy is "muddle", as in to muddle the mint in a julep or a mojito. From Webster's : muddle- to mix up; bungle. To confuse mentally; befuddle. To act or think confusedly. A mess; jumble. Mental confusion.
                                                                      Perhaps the mental side of "muddle" is a consequence of a couple well-muddled minty cocktails!

                                                                      1. k
                                                                        kimmer1850 RE: calla0413 Jan 29, 2007 08:28 AM

                                                                        The Japanese have a word -umami- that describes a certain "mouth feel." I just think it sounds like "oohh mommie" which perfectly describes how foie gras tastes too me.

                                                                        Also, I have a friend from Colombia who uses the word "yummyliscious" to describe something he really likes. It's funny until you hear it with the sexist little accent! Well, it still sounds funny but I could hear him repeat it ad infinitum!

                                                                        1. Sam Fujisaka RE: calla0413 Jan 29, 2007 10:11 AM

                                                                          Given what Anthony Bourdain ate recently, I picture him saying "Mmmm, rectulicious!"

                                                                          5 Replies
                                                                          1. re: Sam Fujisaka
                                                                            sivyaleah RE: Sam Fujisaka Jan 29, 2007 10:20 AM

                                                                            LOL! Good word!

                                                                            1. re: sivyaleah
                                                                              Harp00n RE: sivyaleah Jan 29, 2007 10:40 AM

                                                                              Never to be confused with asinine.

                                                                            2. re: Sam Fujisaka
                                                                              Veggo RE: Sam Fujisaka Jan 29, 2007 10:49 AM

                                                                              sphincter-lickin' good? apologies to the Colonel

                                                                              1. re: Veggo
                                                                                Carmelizedbunions RE: Veggo Jan 29, 2007 10:58 AM

                                                                                My buddy tells me " i dig on swine, from the rooter to the tooter."

                                                                              2. re: Sam Fujisaka
                                                                                Davwud RE: Sam Fujisaka Jan 30, 2007 03:43 AM

                                                                                Rectyum!!!

                                                                                DT

                                                                              3. a
                                                                                amyvc RE: calla0413 Jan 29, 2007 10:59 AM

                                                                                I often use "lovely" or "beautiful" - don't know why. My friend frequently says "not ok". As in, "This cake is so good it's not ok." It sounds weird here - is better in the context of it's not ok how much of a dork i'm being about food or I love it so much it's not ok.

                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                1. re: amyvc
                                                                                  Veggo RE: amyvc Jan 29, 2007 03:53 PM

                                                                                  I like your "not ok" a lot more than the tired, coarse & overused "this doesn't suck", which is NOT ok!

                                                                                  1. re: amyvc
                                                                                    revsharkie RE: amyvc Jan 29, 2007 05:11 PM

                                                                                    yes...my usual description, if something's good, is "it's just lovely." (Quite the opposite of the chicken fried steak I had for supper tonight, which was inedibly salty.)

                                                                                  2. MaspethMaven RE: calla0413 Jan 29, 2007 06:11 PM

                                                                                    I have been known to say "that tastes like basement," in the context of a stuffed mushroom dish where the mushrooms were too watery/spongey/undercooked.

                                                                                    1. sashimi73 RE: calla0413 Feb 3, 2007 08:25 AM

                                                                                      Ethereal! Sublime!

                                                                                      1. Ljubitca RE: calla0413 Feb 5, 2007 05:13 PM

                                                                                        When we have mighty tasty mexican we say Mexcellent. It always gets me. I am sure you all use this term but we think if it as ours.

                                                                                        1. CindyJ RE: calla0413 Feb 6, 2007 10:55 AM

                                                                                          One of my all time favorite phrases, uttered after taking a sip of a run-of-the-mill wine, paraphrased from the movie "Sideways": "Quaffable, but not transcendent."

                                                                                          1. yumyumyogi RE: calla0413 Feb 6, 2007 11:04 AM

                                                                                            I love how Koreans use the word that means something like refreshing/cool to describe something spicy, hot and broth-y. They'll slurp up some insanely hot (in temperature and spice) soup and say, "ah, shi-won-hah-dah!" as though they just took a chug of beer on a hot day.

                                                                                            1. Dagney RE: calla0413 Feb 7, 2007 04:10 PM

                                                                                              Chewing slows down. Eyes close. I savor the layers of ingrediants in their delightful harmony, then I say..Dear God, this is insane.

                                                                                              Dagney

                                                                                              1. Sister Y RE: calla0413 Feb 15, 2007 11:08 PM

                                                                                                Describing natto: "It has the texture of chunky snot and tastes like the icy hand of death."

                                                                                                So accurate! Emotionally, at least.

                                                                                                1. minigourmet RE: calla0413 Feb 16, 2007 02:30 AM

                                                                                                  seductive

                                                                                                  1. PseudoNerd RE: calla0413 Feb 18, 2007 12:15 AM

                                                                                                    food can-- or should be able to-- galvanize, no?

                                                                                                    unctuous for kabocha, nut butter, or some types of honey

                                                                                                    luscious

                                                                                                    1. PseudoNerd RE: calla0413 Feb 18, 2007 12:15 AM

                                                                                                      how do I delete?

                                                                                                      1. s
                                                                                                        slacker RE: calla0413 Feb 19, 2007 02:50 PM

                                                                                                        orgasmic. That peach I ate, dripping over the sink, was absolutely orgasmic.

                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: slacker
                                                                                                          nummanumma RE: slacker Feb 19, 2007 03:00 PM

                                                                                                          my fil loves to pronounce things *scrumptious*- this from a 65+ year old man. it annoys and entertains me in equal parts.

                                                                                                          1. re: nummanumma
                                                                                                            Non Cognomina RE: nummanumma Feb 20, 2007 06:02 PM

                                                                                                            My mom always describes things as "scrumptious," which makes me think of rugby (scrum), which is not a good "food" image for me....

                                                                                                        2. g
                                                                                                          greenstate RE: calla0413 Feb 20, 2007 03:35 PM

                                                                                                          When my son was about four years old, he was a very enthusiastic eater.He usually proclaimed "thumbs up!" and signalled accordingly with his thumb pointing upward. Occasionally he pointed his thumb down. One time he paused then stuck his thumb out horizontally, and said "sideways." "Sideways" became our family's description of mediocre food.

                                                                                                          1. Non Cognomina RE: calla0413 Feb 20, 2007 06:04 PM

                                                                                                            My two favorites that I use with discretion and aplomb:

                                                                                                            sexy

                                                                                                            cravable

                                                                                                            1. m
                                                                                                              misterbrucie RE: calla0413 Feb 20, 2007 11:37 PM

                                                                                                              Offering Endangered Species Black Panther Chocolate to friends:

                                                                                                              "It will slap you and call you Bitch."

                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                              1. re: misterbrucie
                                                                                                                calla0413 RE: misterbrucie Feb 21, 2007 01:51 PM

                                                                                                                Still laughing on this one.....

                                                                                                                Good one! Love it!

                                                                                                              2. Lori SF RE: calla0413 Feb 21, 2007 01:33 PM

                                                                                                                Divine, sacreligious, outrageously good.

                                                                                                                When not so good I say barf

                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                1. re: Lori SF
                                                                                                                  jwbarth RE: Lori SF Feb 21, 2007 02:01 PM

                                                                                                                  Didn't Homer once say "sacre-licious!"?

                                                                                                                2. bookwormchef RE: calla0413 Feb 21, 2007 04:12 PM

                                                                                                                  When my mother-in-law eats something rich or heavy, she calls it "moorish"?!

                                                                                                                  1. o
                                                                                                                    Oh Robin RE: calla0413 Feb 23, 2007 12:53 PM

                                                                                                                    Luscious.

                                                                                                                    Or as Fergie says, "Tasty, tasty!"

                                                                                                                    1. w
                                                                                                                      willwork4food RE: calla0413 Mar 1, 2007 08:39 PM

                                                                                                                      When I was younger I didn't like salad. I always said "it tastes like the way grass smells after you mow the lawn." Or tomatoes "they taste too raw."

                                                                                                                      1. ambrose RE: calla0413 Mar 2, 2007 04:19 AM

                                                                                                                        I always laugh when I see or hear the word "enhanced" used to describe a flavor. Sorry, but this always makes me think of Nip/Tuck, the TV show about plastic surgeons who often use their skills to er, well, you know -enhance certain body parts!

                                                                                                                        1. t
                                                                                                                          thinks too much RE: calla0413 Mar 9, 2007 12:19 PM

                                                                                                                          One that is nauseatingly overused is "fabulous"

                                                                                                                          A general term: "toe-curling" because when it's that good, my toes start curling.

                                                                                                                          More specific terms I like are "briny" "yeasty" and "unctuous"

                                                                                                                          1. l
                                                                                                                            lisaf RE: calla0413 Mar 9, 2007 01:49 PM

                                                                                                                            I stole this from the original Iron Chef. "It feels luxurious in my mouth" Just fan to say and see the reaction of others.

                                                                                                                            1. n
                                                                                                                              niccole RE: calla0413 Mar 9, 2007 04:38 PM

                                                                                                                              i am known for blurting out: F T !!!!!!!! ( F ^%((^% ING TASTY! )

                                                                                                                              1. b
                                                                                                                                BostonBarGuy RE: calla0413 Mar 13, 2007 07:16 AM

                                                                                                                                When I'm dining with friends who LOVE food and we have a bit of something that just rocks your world, the perfect combination of ingredients and love, we describe it as "sex on a fork". That really captures the moment, it doesn't get any better.

                                                                                                                                Show Hidden Posts