Re: The effects of food on the palate prior to smoke...
Everyone's mileage will vary, as everyone's sense of taste/smell is different. For me, apparently I have an extremely sensitive palate. Eating or drinking anything before (or during) a smoke renders my mouth tainted with the food/drink flavor. Sweet things are the worst, makes the smoke taste bitter. I don't eat much spicy stuff, but that tends to numb my mouth (which is why I don't eat it). Coffee I drink with sugar and cream, which makes it sweet, and a smoking disaster. Even a royal aged Scotch (straight up, of course) makes the smoke taste dull. Since I'm banished to the back yard (or parking lot at work) for smoking, eating/drinking is never an option for me ... so it kinda works out.
As an aside, whatever baccy is my "first smoke" of the day, tends to imprint itself upon my tongue through the whole day. I prefer a straight VA to start a day, then may vary with a burley or VaPer during. By the time nightfall is reached, my palate is so assaulted by prior smokes plus feedings; the only thing I can taste is a nice strong VaPer like Fillmore or Escudo.
Ron aka RJ aka RJPuffs
Old age isn't too bad, when you consider the alternative.