The purported existence of a tongue map is considered to be one of the bigger sensory myths.
The Scientific American Vol. 284 March 2001 has several articles on taste, such as “The Taste Map: All Wrong“ and “Making Sense of Taste“.
The origin of the myth might be errors in translating a german article (P. Hänig: Zur Psychophysik des Geschmackssinnes. In: Philosophische Studien. 1901, 17, S. 576-623).
- Jeannine Delwiche, Trends in Food science & Technology 7, 1996, Are there “Basic” Tastes?
- Alejandro Caicedo and Stephen D. Roper, SCIENCE VOL 291 23 FEBRUARY 2001, Taste Receptor Cells That Discriminate Between Bitter Stimuli ( which touches the problem from th point of view of chemoreception).