Expensive wine: are we all just pretending to like it?

Someone turns up to your dinner party with a few bottles of Oxford Landing Sauvignon Blanc: what do you do? According to a new study by scientists at the University of Bonn, you sip it as though it were cats’ wee.

Apparently, rather than being able to impartially assess its effect upon your tastebuds, its inexpensive price tag will leave your subconscious shuddering over the thought that it has previously shared a newsagent chiller with squat cans of knock-off tropical pop. Our brain, it seems, believes that more expensive wines taste better than cheaper ones.

Sure, there are no doubt some wine geniuses who need nothing more than taste alone to identify which brand of fruity sauvignons is singing sweet, citrussy nothings to their palate. But when most of us buy wine from the supermarket, we are not scouring labels for an exhaustive comparison of grape variety. We’re eyeballing bottles to see which looks the nicest, and, most probably using the words “This one used to be five pounds more expensive – must’ve been a good one!” If you didn’t already know that people equate a wine’s price with its quality, then you’re either teetotal or we’d very much like a visit to the factory in which you make your homebrew.


read more on telegraph.co.uk