Perceived fattiness and creaminess plus other texture and flavor attributes were assessed for a group of vanilla custard desserts, white sauces, and mayonnaises that differed widely in ingredients, fat content (0-72%), and consumption temperatures. In addition, the foods were measured instrumentally with regard to their lubricative properties, infra-red reflectance and turbidity of rinse water. Despite the variety in foods, fat content showed strong correlations with the instrumental measures, and perceived fattiness, and weaker but still significant correlations with creamy mouth and after-feel. Friction and infra-red reflectance demonstrated that properties of the surface of the oral food bolus are important for fat-related attributes via mechanisms such as lubrication. Turbidity of rinse water suggested that properties of the bulk of the food bolus are important as well. Creamy after-feel related less well to instrumental measures, fat content and other sensory attributes suggesting that the creaminess of oral coatings is not only affected by fat but also by other unknown properties. © 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.