1811: Best-Tasting Colors

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Best-Tasting Colors
I recognize that chocolate is its own thing on which reasonable people may differ. Everything else here is objective fact.
Title text: I recognize that chocolate is its own thing on which reasonable people may differ. Everything else here is objective fact.


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This is obviously wrong because white chocolate is not real chocolate. Let the flamewar begin. -- 15:22, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

Well, it's not technically chocolate, but it is a derivative -- insert math joke -- and the chart doesn't seem to be concerned with what it is, just with what it's called; after all, that which is called white chocolate by any other name would taste just as sweet, putting some off while others enjoy it. Nyperold (talk) 16:44, 15 March 2017 (UTC)
As per your request: http://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php/626:_Newton_and_Leibniz 22:08, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

Purple skittles in France taste like blueberry. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Vanilla isn't white. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

What are all of the question marks here for? 15:51, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

I think those question marks at the top are supposed to be bubble gum. 16:03, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

I suspect this is Randall's take on Fake News™, since it contains verifiably false claims such as coffee and liquorice being bad, and candy floss being better than watermelon 16:12, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

"In the title text, Randall asserts that his rankings of colors and foods are indisputable (with the exception of chocolate). This is of course ridiculous, as everyone knows that watermelon and strawberry are inherently superior to the likes of Citrus Fruits."...but his rankings of strawberry and of watermelon (x2) are higher than for oranges, lemons, and limes. There is no contradiction here; nothing that is ridiculous. 16:29, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

Liquorice, while an acquired taste certainly doesn't belong that far down, I'd take it over a long list of other things on the chart, but then again ... I'm Scandinavian (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)
Sweet liquorice, or salted? I'm pretty sure there should be two dots there. Also, coffee and chocolate are both missing from the right end of the 'black' row. Most of the others, I think I'd flip the line, but keep each line in the same place. I guess taste is variable in weird ways 21:56, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

Hmm. The selection seems quite diverse compared to a standard bag of jelly beans, but doesn't really cover the range of a gourmet brand. I wonder where root beer falls, or Dr Pepper. And that's not even getting into color classification when the bean has more than one color. Personally, when I used to get gourmet jelly bean brands, I would do the squeeze-and-sniff test on a particular shade of brown, because it was used for both coffee and a flavor I liked. I remember Lore Sjöberg having a similar problem with cinnamon and cherry, but if he ever arrived at my solution, I don't know. Nyperold (talk) 16:44, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

Interesting theory that he's talking about flavors of jelly beans, though there's really nothing to indicate he is. But I believe every one of those food flavors are included in, for example, Jelly Belly's lineup (with the possible exception of a White Chocolate flavor). -boB (talk) 17:00, 15 March 2017 (UTC)
My take upon reading the comic was that it refers to Jelly Bellies. If you have ever tried a popcorn jelly belly you know how bad they are.... 23:32, 16 March 2017 (UTC)
I really like the "buttered popcorn" Jelly Bellys -boB (talk) 17:27, 17 March 2017 (UTC)
If you look at https://www.jellybelly.com/flavor-guides webpage though a lot of flavors from the comics are not jelly belly flavors.--Lul (talk) 11:52, 17 March 2017 (UTC)

I enjoy licorice and white chocolate, and I think strawberry is overrated. Fight me. 17:34, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

I don't think its necessarily jelly beans specifically. I think it's any candy that comes with multiple flavors in a pack, including jelly beans but not limited to them. (ie. also fruit snacks, Airheads, Necco Wafers, Jolly Ranchers, Sourpatch Kids, etc.) 16:47, 11 March 2020 (UTC)

If it is jelly beans it is definitely more agreeable then actual food. Because popcorn jelly beans are awful which explains why there a outlier. It also explains why there split by color. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

It could also explain the question marks. They could be jelly beans for which he was not able to identify the flavor, but was able to judge it. 13:16, 17 March 2017 (UTC)

Wow. I've seen stupidity, I've seen REAL stupidity, and now there comes this comic. Randall is confirmed for pleb taste. Also quit fucking editing my posts just because I have an objectively better taste than you do and it offends you that someone would call randall out on having shit taste in flavors. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

I'm a retard pretending i'm superior by liking certain fruits. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

My tastes now rate sweet tastes poorly - as well as sour, so I would down rate candyfloss, but not up rate lemon. The variability of chocolate represents the range from choc flavoured sweet margarine, through to 90% coco solids. My peak preference being about 50-60%. RIIW - Ponder it (talk) 18:14, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

Patrician taste good sir. Though, I respectfully disagree with your opinion on sour only somewhat: Lemons combined with other flavors make lemons pretty dang tasty. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Has anyone figured out what all the question marks in the graph are for yet? 20:08, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

All the question marks made me wonder if he accidentally published an early draft again or something. 20:44, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

I'm fairly sure the question marks are related to lewd matters. KromdarTheAllHungering (talk) 02:56, 16 March 2017 (UTC)

Hi, I added a table. Can somebody fix and fill it as I am not the best at tablework (as you can see). Dontknow (talk) 02:45, 16 March 2017 (UTC)

Fixed and partially filled! Cody Code (talk) 03:52, 16 March 2017 (UTC)

I removed the incomplete. The table is completely filled and there is a good explanation. Dontknow (talk) 21:47, 21 March 2017 (UTC)


As the transcript is for the visually impaired, I think the colored letters should only be used in the explanation and described [pink letters] in the transcript; what do you think? --LaVe (talk) 21:06, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

The transcript is not only for visually impaired. Nevertheless those translation programs know colors. Be smart. And a simple bold header is enough at the discussion page.--Dgbrt (talk) 21:14, 15 March 2017 (UTC)

“Most people” do not like licorice; Most Americans, you mean. Licorice is extremely popular in Europe in many varieties. But they don’t like root beer. 06:04, 16 March 2017 (UTC)

AFAIR in pretty much every food item common to the US and the UK, the US version had a far larger sugar content. My theory is that salt was more expensive that sugar everywhere but the coastal regions, so preserving with sugar was the way to go and hence the apparent national "sweet tooth" RoyT (talk) 08:04, 16 March 2017 (UTC)
Hello. As a european myself, i can assure you that Licorice is not extremly popular here, except among some loners, who are recieved and watched critically by their fellow europeans. Most people in Europe don't like it. Also, most people in Europe heard of rootbeer, but nearly noone ever drank it - i wouldn't even know where to get it here. -- 10:08, 16 March 2017 (UTC)
You can't speak for most people in Europe. Tastes are really different according to which countries you speak about. There are lot of European alcohols with licorice flavors and also lot of licorice candies... -- Lul (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Wait, lemons? I like lemons. Anyone with an excess of raw lemons for eating should send me them. I would eat them consistently if it weren't for the fact that doing so makes my gums sore afterwards. I've several times distilled lemon juice into a much, much stronger "lemon syrup" with about 1/10th the volume and the consistency of maple syrup, and my general feeling is that I would eat it like candy if it were widely available, even though it has virtually no sugar in it. Lemon flavor is best flavor! 07:51, 16 March 2017 (UTC)

Lemon juice has plenty of sugar in it. That's why it's used for invisible ink. 08:28, 16 March 2017 (UTC)
I want to try lemon syrup now; bet it would be perfect for pancakes. -- 18:31, 17 March 2017 (UTC)

Why are those values approximate when they have four significant figures? 08:28, 16 March 2017 (UTC)

How are bananas not included? (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

The watermelon flavor of Airheads candy is completely green. Also, many watermelon candies partially include a green part to mimic the appearance of watermelon, and even though they taste the same, may elicit a false feeling of tasting better. 12:04, 16 March 2017 (UTC)

"???" refers to the mystery Dum Dums flavor. I'm pretty sure about this. 21:18, 21 March 2017 (UTC) This is some manchild pleb taste. "EWW COFFY NASTY >:( MOMMY I WANT SWEET :O" seriously. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

People can have opinions. You don't need to take opinions you disapprove of to be "stupid" and "immature", you.

The question marks for blue might have to do with George Carlin's lament over the lack of blue food.CoderLass (talk) 21:53, 20 March 2017 (UTC)

So Randall talks about the flavor of colors based on the food they are associated with, but he says "blue" and doesn't mention blueberries and says "black" but doesn't mention blackberries? WHAT? Were they just not good enough? --JayRulesXKCD what's up? 15:18, 4 April 2017 (UTC)

I took this as being about artificial colors. That also explains the ??? areas. So, it is a guide for when getting e.g. icecream, bubblegum, yoghurt, etc. to which colour to pick, regardless of their labels... am I really alone with this? --Lupo (talk) 12:26, 1 October 2019 (UTC)

Cotton candy's original color is obviously white, how did it managed to end up as pink at all? Also, Randall have a good metaphorical taste, but a terrible literal one. 03:08, 9 January 2021 (UTC)