Archive for October, 2006

Fruity Little Numbers, Part Deux

Monday, October 16th, 2006

I did a bit of Internet digging and found the full articles referred to in the previous post:

American Association of Wine Economists – Journal site
What Determines Wine Prices: Objective Vs. Sensory Characteristics – PDF of study
Assessing the Effect of Information on the Reservation Price for Champagne: What are Consumers Actually Paying for? – PDF of study

If anything, the objective/sensory study proves something we’ve known about marketing all along: the sizzle sells the steak, no matter how good the steak might be instrinsically.

Fruity Little Numbers – Value of Wine and relationship to viewing vs. tasting

Friday, October 13th, 2006

If you subscribe to The Economist, check out page 81 of this week’s (October 14 – 20, 2006) edition.  Two studies were released in The Journal of Wine Economics.  In one study, they looked at a price equation to compare 1,000 bottles of Bordeaux and Burgundy wines tasted blindly by experts and found that the price of wine is largely determined by objective standards such as color, ranking and vintage rather than simply by taste and smell.  In another, 120 people were observed during their bidding on non-vintage champagne after tasting it blind, after inspecting only the bottle, and after tasting it when seeing the bottle, and the bidding was 33% higher when tasters could see the bottle.

Clef du Vin

Friday, October 13th, 2006

I’ve come across the Clef du Vin in several catalogs. The item purportedly is able to simulate the taste of an aged wine simply by dipping the product into the wine one second for each year. To rephrase, say you buy a bottle of 2005 Bordeaux. You want to know how it will taste in 8-10 years time. Dip the Clef du Vin in your glass for 8-10 seconds and the chemical reaction with stimulate the wine to produce its essential aged flavor of itself in 8-10 years time. The Clef du Vin does not age the wine itself, but helps simulate what the wine would taste like with aging. Put yet another way (from Chateau Online), “It will gradually alter the organoleptic qualities (taste, smell, flavours and bouquet) of the wine, in a controlled way.”

Vinum Master Description – Most detailed description I’ve seen thus far of what it is and how it works
Grapevine – Time Magazine article about the Clef du Vin Listing – Buy it here – Good review – Official Web site

Have any experience with it? Please submit your comments and let us know.

39th National Wine Week – Results

Friday, October 13th, 2006

Paul and I went to Cité for national wine week (see previous post) on September 27th. I haven’t been to Cité in years; in fact, I worked in the Time Life building for 2 years and never made it down to the restaurant while I was there. Anyway, wine week this year was somewhat lackluster. The wines, though copiously poured, got an overall ‘ho-hum’ assessment from us both. Thankfully, they saved themselves with some outstanding filet mignons.