Tuesday, December 15, 2015

A Beer Drinker Discovers That Wine Tasting Is Junk Science!

As a beer drinker, I have often been puzzled by wine aficionados. Prices can vary wildly and to me, often the more expensive the wine the worse it tastes. I mean, I like a nice glass of white wine from time to time. But I don't understand paying $50 in a restaurant for a bottle of the stuff. Generally, when given the opportunity, I prefer a nice, cold draft. To me, one glass of wine pretty much tastes like the next one. Some are better, some worse just like with beer. But I would not pay $50 for a bottle of beer, why would I pay $50 for a bottle of wine? But in many restaurants, that is the going price and many people are happy to pay it. It is something I have never really understood. I have always wondered if I was alone in thinking that wine is pretty much wine. Today, I came across this article published in The Guardian in 2013 reviewing the evidence that wine tasting is junk science. For example, a scientist "presented the same Bordeaux superior wine to 57 volunteers a week apart and in two different bottles – one for a table wine, the other for a grand cru. The tasters were fooled." Another example "People could tell the difference between wines under £5 and those above £10 only 53% of the time for whites and only 47% of the time for reds. Overall they would have been just as a successful flipping a coin to guess." So, if people enjoy more expensive wine as much as less expensive wine, why are they willing to pay more for wine? I think I will open up a nice cold amber brew and ponder that question.