Category Archives: Tasting and taste

How big are your bubbles?

In the pre-Christmas dearth of news, when all serious journalists seem either to be at their Christmas parties or on their way home for the year, comes the widely reported story that champagne is better with bigger bubbles. This assertion … Continue reading

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Minerality in wine update

The discussion, or debate as many would like to see it, about minerality has moved on considerably since my post on the subject back in 2012, as evidenced by the Institute of Masters of Wine seminar about a month ago, which … Continue reading

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Subjectivity in Wine Appreciation article

Just a quick post to say that my Subjectivity in Wine Appreciation article, published in The World of Fine Wine Issue 51 Q1 2016, is now available here.

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Why four’s the aroma limit

I recently had an article published in Circle Update (the magazine of the Circle of Wine Writers). It concerned the number of aromas used in wine tasting notes. If you are interested you can view and download a PDF offprint … Continue reading

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How smell is like vision, and what that means for wine

Considering the very different impressions that vision and smell make on us, there are surprising similarities in how the two senses are processed before they reach the brain. And it is quite possible that these similarities may throw some light on how we … Continue reading

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Tasting order and wine scores

It is well known that your perception of a wine is affected by what was tasted immediately beforehand. This is similar to how other senses behave. If, for example, you sit in the dark for several minutes and then expose yourself … Continue reading

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Solid evidence for terroir influence on wine flavour

I recently stumbled across what seems to be solid evidence for some effects of terroir on wine. It is not new research, but for some reason it had managed to elude me, and was only brought to my attention by … Continue reading

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Arribes de Ventonia Redux – bottle variation?

Following my very enthusiastic review of Arribes de Ventonia 2011, I snapped up the remaining bottles I could find, and also bought a few from the 2013 vintage, which was a slightly different cépage. I tried the 2013 first, and it was … Continue reading

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Gestalt perception of flavour

Give your Man On The Street a glass of wine and ask him how it tastes, and you could well get the response “it tastes like wine”. Nothing wrong with that – it is what might be described as a gestalt perception. Wine contains hundreds … Continue reading

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Subjectivity ain’t that simple

Today we shall take as our text verse 1 of The Nine Attributes of Greatness, a section of Karen McNeil’s The Wine Bible: No one needs a wine book to tell them what they like to drink. Subjectivity in wine is pretty easy. … Continue reading

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