May 5, 2008
I first became interested in how music affects one's approach to wine when I read a 1997 article in Nature Magazine, nicely summarized here. It described how wine purchases are modified by the music being played at the time of purchase. Reportedly, at the wine shop being studied, German wines made up 73% of sales on the days German music was played while French wines accounted for 77% of sales on the days French music was played. Helpful retailer tip - running the needle through the groves of your old Edit Piaf albums will help unload those lingering cases of obscure Madiran.
Ten years later, I'm introduced to the likes of Clark Smith, the owner of Vinovation and industry rabble rouser. Clark tends to enjoy creating a wake in still ponds. And he is a tireless promoter of a number of ideas, including the discovery that music can affect our sense of taste and smell. As reported in my previous posting, Smith's theory is that romantic music (such as Mozart) enhances the taste of Pinot, while brooding, angry music (i.e., Punk Rock) enhances Cabernet Sauvignon.
Skeptical? Let's Test It!
At last month's wine class at the Reaves Gallery, attendees voted on the content of this month's class. They enthusiastically chose to participate in this test. Participants will be tasting six wines paired with different music to see whether the music makes us like a wine more or less than when tasted alone.
This experience is a must for anyone who has ever wondered what music to play during their dinner party, in their wine shop, or at their tasting bar. Is it possible to enjoy a certain wine more when you hear a certain type of music? Come join us and see what you think!
Where: Reaves Gallery, 235 Gough St. (Hayes Valley) San Franciso
Cost: $49 (must be 21)
Dave the Wine Merchant
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