While many wine lovers will tell you otherwise, the most dominant flavour in
that glass of Merlot may its price tag.
"We’ve known for a long time that there’s a correlation between what
you pay for a wine and how good it tastes to you, but this correlation only
exists, of course, when people know the price," says Dan Ariely, author of
The Upside of Irrationality.
To prove his point, he references the work of wine critic Robin Goldstein, whose paper
detailing more than 6,000 blind tastings maintains that “individuals who
are unaware of the price do not derive more enjoyment from more expensive
Goldstein argues that most people buy wine based on image rather than any
combination of smell or taste and that our expectations do influence our enjoyment.
As a result, when most people are given wine without seeing the label, they’re
just as likely to prefer cheaper wines as compared to more expensive wines.