Folks at Germany’s Heidelberg University and the Netherlands’ University of Groningen developed a “synthetic tongue” that uses 22 different fluorescent dyes to accurately distinguish between different whiskies.
When the tongue comes into contact with a whisky, it’s able to determine its “flavor profile” based on the subtle changes in brightness exhibited by the dyes.
In a test, the tongue was able to recognize the brand, origin, blending state, age, and taste of 33 whiskies. No word on whether it exhibited slurred speech.
But why develop a whisky-tasting synthetic tongue, since it’s never going to appreciate whisky in the way that we can?
“Fake whiskies are always annoying customers,” Professor Dr. Andreas Herrmann of the University of Groningen continued. “But there is no convenient and accurate method in the market to detect counterfeiting rapidly and without expensive equipment. We are thus thinking about tailoring our artificial tongue to address this problem.”
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