Retronasal Effect The retronasal effect is a scientific way to describe the flavors that linger in the back of your throat after you have eaten a bite of cheese or had a sip of wine. But what is flavor? Flavor is a product of your sense of taste in concert with what your sense of smell. Humans’ sense of taste is limited (sweet, salty, sour, bitter, umami), but we are able to detect thousands of aromas. When you’ve just eaten a bit of cheese, and a pineapple-y note lingers in the back of your throat, that’s the retronasal effect in action.