Monday, November 05, 2007

The Subjectivity of Wine

Jonah Lehrer reports on various experiments to prove that wine-tasting is subjective:
In 2001, Frederic Brochet, of the University of Bordeaux, conducted two separate and very mischievous experiments. In the first test, Brochet invited 57 wine experts and asked them to give their impressions of what looked like two glasses of red and white wine. The wines were actually the same white wine, one of which had been tinted red with food coloring. But that didn't stop the experts from describing the "red" wine in language typically used to describe red wines. One expert praised its "jamminess," while another enjoyed its "crushed red fruit." Not a single one noticed it was actually a white wine.
The experts also cannot tell the difference between expensive and cheap wines, and can be fooled by just putting a fancy label on the bottle.

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