Is the appeal to euphonic distortion learned?

Hi everyone,

I have been thinking a little bit about the idea of euphonic distortion. The idea that we can make an amplifier or preamplifier sound better by not being so absolutely true to the input. The common story is that by adding 2nd order harmonics the music sounds more pleasant to more people. Certainly Pass has written a great deal, and with more nuance and detail about this and makes no bones about his desire to make a good sounding, rather than well measuring product.

Lets keep this simple description of euphonic distortion for the sake of argument, or we’ll devolve into a definition game.

I’m wondering whether it is possible that this is in large part learned? For instance, if I grew up with non-euphonic amps and then was exposed to an amp with high amounts of 2nd order distortion would I like it? Is the appeal here one which you have to have learned to like? Like black coffee through a French press?

And this discussion is of course in line with my thoughts about the ear/brain learning process. That there are no absolute’s in music reproduction because we keep re-training our ears. We keep adjusting what we listen to and ultimately at some point have to decide whether the discrimination between gear makes us happier or not. (Go ahead writers, steal this topic and don't mention me again, I know who you are).
We all had parents of a variety of cooking skills and tastes, but that's what we learn as homey, and no restaurant can match it.

If I went to a restaurant and it tasted like my mom's cooking, I'd run out as fast as I could.
@atmasphere if the increased ratio of second and/or third order harmonics in tube equipment masks the higher order harmonics, are you also saying that the frequency response of tube amps in the highest audible frequencies is NOT lower than that of SS amps, but we just don't "hear" those higher frequencies because they are masked by the 2d/3d orders?
I agree with @dave_b the audio performance on an amplifier, pre-amplifier or any audio reproduction gear should only be compared against how the musical instruments (especially the classical ones) and the human voice sounds at real concerts (preferably in a small venue/hall and without the use of any amplification that inherently induces harmonic distortions) sounds like.
During my youth I had the privilege to go to many live concerts in theater halls, jazz clubs, classical music concerts, etc) and I know how the instruments really sound. Once your ear is accustomed to those live sounds it becomes easier to distinguish audi that it’s reproduces through electronics and speakers and tell which ones are closer to the real sound than others.It always puzzles me that speakers/amplifiers/pre-amplifiers that add coloration and/or a certain degree of harmonic distortions, sound better to some people. This could very well be something they have "learned" by only listening to music from recordings or from live performances in large venues where the sound comes from large speaker systems and amplifiers anyway.
When you hear live music played on good piano, violin, cello, flute, oboe, timpani, cymbals etc. from close by and without any amplification, it will completely change your perspective on how music can and should sound.
I grew up with tube radios and a Voice of Music tube large portable record player.  1953 until 1968.  Have owned at at least 20 different solid state amps since. Class A/B never seems to satisfy my listening.  I have one special tube amp and class Ds, can't seem to decide between them.