Umami is one of the five basic tastes (along with sweet, sour, salty and bitter) and implies a rich savory flavor that is characteristic of a long-stewed meat or broth.
Umami can be a confusing addition to restaurant menus because many consumers are unsure what umami actually is, and in fact less than a third of consumers know it despite its increased placement on menus in the past four years.
Umami can be developed in many forms, including as an added richness to mushroom or other plant-based dishes, or even to balance the sweetness in a cocktail through the addition of umami bitters.
Market research firm Datassential reports that 30% of the population knows about umami but only 19% have tried it, with awareness being highest amongst Asian consumers.
Click through the gallery to learn more about this Flavor of the Week and see how one restaurant is using umami on its menu.