So I just asked the wikipedias, and apparently burning wet wood results in more unburned hydrocarbons going up the flue (or out the chimney in our case) because the energy that would otherwise go to combustion goes to heating the moisture. That might make it harder to achieve thin blue smoke at lower temps, but that's just a guess.
Looks like an interesting article that I'll have to read when I don't have work I should be doing. From a glance, it looks like my little theory might be bunk and it is as simple as removing water from the wood. So I guess my wood goblin theory might be right after all.
So whether that would mean bitter tasting smoke or not, I don't know. But you're probably right that in the small quantities she's talking about, it's not likely to make a noticeable difference.