@Steve TPHC Nice list.
I read in a book (that I cannot seem to find at the moment) that the combination of flavors has as much to do with taste as it does philosophy. Each ingredient represents something, each process brings out the "chi," and the collection of ingredients within that process needs to be harmonious. It completely upended my perception of food in general. Especially Chinese food.
I wish I could remember the book. It's buried somewhere.
In Chinese Gastronomy, the authors Hsiaang Ju Lin and Tsuifeng Lin speak to the harmonious "marriage of flavors". Their second chapter is dedicated to "flavour". Perhaps this is the book you are thinking of?
The Chinese have perected their art for 5,000 years while I...I am still in the stone age!