The verb sapere can mean tasting like something or having a sense of taste. The latter can be understood figuratively close to "to be wise or sensible". Dictionaries list the participle sapiens separately, and only the figurative meaning is given in all sources I looked at. Why is this so? Are there cases where sapiens means something like "tasty" rather than "smart"? Or, from a different point of view, can one interpret — from a linguistic point of view — the name Homo sapiens to mean that the animals in question are tasty instead of smart?
I think that @Mus Silvanus is correct, but should like to answer separately by giving actual examples from an old dictionary, which may throw a little more light.
Sapiens, entis Part. [sapio]. || Adj. wise, sensible, well-advised, discreet, judicious : ut quisque maxime perspicit, quid in re quaque verissimum sit, quique acutissime et celerrime potest et videre et explicare rationem, is prudentissimus et sapientissimus rite haberi solet, Cic. Off. 1, 5, 16 … — and so on (at some length). This is followed by
Sapienter, Av. sensibly, discreetly, prudently, judiciously, wisely — (with examples of comparative and superlative), but
Sapidus, a, um, adj. [sapio] well-tasting, relishing, savoury : tucetum perquam sapidissimum, App. M. 2, 117 : avis sapidior, Apic. 6, 6 || Fig. wise, prudent : puellae Alcim. 6 prooem. Then we also find from later sources
Saporatus, a, um. adj. [sapor] seasoned, savoury : pulmenta, Tert. Spect 27 : cibi, Amm. 31, 2
Saporatus looks like the perfect participle of an otherwise unknown verb saporo (1st conj.) Personally, I can think only that there might have been two verbs sapio and saporo, the similarity of which, coupled with various dialects, led to their meanings having been confounded by the time when spelling became more standardised.