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Keywords:

  • Flavour perception;
  • flavour release;
  • flavour volatile analysis;
  • sensory analysis;
  • time-intensity

Summary

The flavours of hard cheeses are derived from the balance of odourants and tastants released during their consumption, but the identity, and balance, of these flavour-inducing compounds is still unknown for most cheeses. This can be attributed to the complexity of cheese composition and its analysis, of the processes occurring during consumption and the variations of human perception and expression of flavours. This review addresses some of the issues and methods being used to understand cheese flavour. It discusses factors which determine flavour release in the mouth, methods of preparation of extracts for analysis, sensory assessment of cheese flavour components and fractions, and of whole cheese, identification of odour active compounds and determination of their relative importance, temporal methods of analysis for flavour release and perception and methods of data analysis.