Wine tasting is a topic that never gets out of date! It’s fun, it’s delicious, it’s sociable. And the wine tasting process itself involves so many dimensions besides smell and taste.
Charles South alerted me to a well-written blog about the biases we bring to wine tasting, on the New Yorker Magazine blogsite: What We Really Taste When We Drink Wine, by Maria Konnikova.
You may have read my previous posts that touch on wine tasting:
– Taste Bias and the $90 Wine
– Sensory Evaluation 1 (Wine): Measuring the Indescribable
If you found those interesting, I think you’ll also enjoy Konnikova’s wine tasting article. It talks about some additional wine tasting studies that focus on how our expectations affect our wine tasting experience. Thanks, Charles!
Here are a few goodies from the New Yorker blog that I especially enjoyed:
– When there’s a “story” behind the wine, we think the wine tastes better. The story might be about the winemaker, the vineyard, the grapes, or even something that should have nothing to do with the taste of the wine. It seems that all that’s important is that the story evokes pleasant associations for us, because we then unconsciously associate those feelings with the wine itself.
– Our taste is influenced by the color and shape of the label on the bottle. Even the name of the winery comes into play – the more difficult it is to pronounce the name of the winery, the more likely we’ll like its wine!
– Amateurs can’t taste differences in wine at all, but a mere twenty-five minute training session makes people better wine tasting judges, and makes them less vulnerable to advertising.
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