At the supermarket:

Correct "Which flavor icecream should we get?"

Incorrect "Which flavor of shampoo should I get?

What word could I use to talk about a particular choice among a collection of different... well... "flavors"?

  • 1
    Editions, variants, and their synonyms. What research have you done and what did you find? Flavours work, too – NVZ Jun 3 '16 at 4:51
  • Choice, kind, style, brand - you need to provide more information to narrow down the options. Did you look up a thesaurus, e.g. thesaurus.com? – Chappo Hasn't Forgotten Monica Jun 3 '16 at 10:57
  • It's perfectly understandable if you use the word "flavor" even when talking about some item that won't be tasted ;) for example, in programming, the term "regex flavor" is often used to refer to the version/edition/implementation/engine of the regular expression grammar/syntax. – Keith Hall Jun 3 '16 at 11:18
  • merriam-webster.com/dictionary/flavor definition 3.a. is pretty generic already – Pete Kirkham Jun 3 '16 at 13:08
  • It depends on the type of information you’re trying to elicit. You could ask, “What type of shampoo should I get?” if you were looking for answers such as, “dandruff control” or “color protection” or “oily hair”. OR you could ask, “What brand of shampoo should I get?” If you were looking for answers like, “Pert” or “Head and Shoulders” or “Finesse”. Of course, “What kind of shampoo should I get?” allows either type of answer. – Jim Jun 4 '16 at 2:52

Normally, I am looking to be more explicit and discerning about which specific word or phrase to express something about some one thing among a mass of vaguely related "stuff." In this regard, I find myself quite amused to be headed in a different direction.


One way to get some response in a qualitative query involving the acquiring of specific goods requiring some manner of clarification before investing resources is to enquire, "What kind?"


I would probably opt for "type".

something distinguishable as a variety

For example:

  1. What type of ice cream is your favourite?
  2. You bought shampoo? What type?
  3. There were lots of types of beer to try.

You could use taste.


Individual preference

This includes both gustation and liking.

"Pick your taste from these shampoos/ice cream."

  • 1
    That’s not really how you use that word. you could ask, “what’s your taste in ice cream?” and you might pick something according to your taste(s).” But you don’t *pick your taste – Jim Jun 3 '16 at 13:57
  • If you've ever tasted shampoo, you know it's something you don't want to taste ;) "taste" in the way you use it could end up getting the desired information, but it's not quite used the way I'm looking for. – Mirror318 Jun 9 '16 at 20:48

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