Wine and Food Diary of Giles MacDonogh BLOGS/CORRESPONDENTS

Tasting With Covid

Written by Giles MacDonogh

Tasting With Covid

Posted: 6th December 2021

A little over a month ago, I caught Covid. It came as a surprise. I had always been very careful, even when the body language of those around me proclaimed the thing was over and done with. I was double-vaccinated and recently boosted, and yet I might have been nursing the disease when I had my latest jab. I thought I had a cold: I was sneezing, had a runny nose and slightly inflamed sinuses; but there was no fever, no racking cough, and no shortness of breath. I only realised I had Covid when I picked up a stale bottle of aftershave I keep on my desk to sanitise my hands and found to my dismay my sense of smell had disappeared.

For someone in my position, to lose your sense of smell is like being struck dumb or blind. I admit, I do far less professional tasting than I used to; but all my adult life – nay, all my life – I have used my nose when shopping, to test the foods on my shelves or in the fridge to see what is good or bad to eat, or to determine the moment when something is cooked and ready. I never season things from recipes, but use my nose and tongue to assess them first. All of a sudden I had entered a world where I was groping in the dark, hoping for the best.

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Giles MacDonogh

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