Ruminating on Gum

It’s not food exactly, but there is some discernment involved in choosing a good flavor of gum. In fact, many of us have been cultivating a taste for gum with great dedication from childhood, starting out with Hubba Bubba (warning: music and creepy sea creatures) and moving on to Orbit Mint Mojito. New York takes the gourmetization of gum to the next logical level with its latest taste test, which pits a panel of tasters and Wylie Dufresne and Alex Stupak of wd-50 restaurant against the chewiest mouth-pleasers in three categories: mint, fruit, and bubblegum.

The winners, like all winners, are highly subjective. In mint, Wrigley’s Spearmint topped the list; the fruit category found a charmer in Adams Sour Cherry; and good old Bazooka original flavor burst every other bubble in the bubblegum category.

The most entertaining part of the article may be Dufresne’s comments. He evinces quite a nose for gum, complete with oenophilelike tasting notes. In the mint category, he criticizes manufacturers for trying “so hard to make everything taste like something aliens dropped off”—which some may find funny coming from a chef known for frying mayonnaise and powdering peanut butter.