Flavor Bites: Benzothiazole

Modest levels of benzothiazole work well to fill out the profile of a wide range of flavors.
Modest levels of benzothiazole work well to fill out the profile of a wide range of flavors.

Some of you may be familiar with the phrase “Jack of all trades but master of none.” The phrase is not normally meant as a compliment and it is a backhanded way of dismissing someone. Benzothiazole (FEMA# 3256, CAS# 95-16-9) is found very widely in nature and would seem to be in imminent danger of being seen as “Jack of all trades and master of none.” This, I think, misses the point.

Benzothiazole has a boiled sulfuric odor. The boiled note implies, correctly, that it should be ideally suited to the leading role in condensed milk flavors. Benzothiazole-based condensed milk flavors work quite well, but this chemical would not really be my first choice for such an important function.

Modest levels of benzothiazole work well to fill out the profile of a wide range of flavors. It is particularly effective when prominent or aggressive notes need to be smoothed out a little.

Note that the dose rates given throughout this article are the levels suggested for use in flavors intended to be dosed at 0.05% in ready-to-drink beverages or in a simple bouillon.

Dairy Flavors

Butter: A boiled note might seem out of place in a fresh butter flavor, but it has a pleasant smoothing effect at 10 ppm. Higher levels are better in butter flavors with any level of cooked profile.

Cheese: Similar levels, in the region of 10 ppm, work in a similar way in cheddar and Parmesan cheese flavors.

Condensed milk: Condensed milk flavors are another matter. Levels of 1,000 ppm work very well. It is tempting to go higher, but this level gives the most natural effect.

Cream: A good range of addition in fresh cream and milk flavors is five ppm to 10 ppm. At this level, it does not infer a cooked profile.

Yogurt: Benzothiazole is distinctly optional in fresh yogurt flavors, but a touch, around two ppm, cuts back on harsher notes.

For the full article, please check out the Perfumer & Flavorist+ December 2021 issue.

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