Experts fail Champagne taste test

on 03/02/12 at 9:33 am

Wine

Wine experts can’t tell the difference between white and rosé Champagne in blind tastings.

An experiment using a range of Champagnes served in black glasses showed that experienced tasters and wine commentators can’t distinguish different styles of Champagne, or indeed, red grapes from white.

Using Pernod Ricard Champagnes such as Perrier-Jouët Belle Epoque Blanc de Blancs 2002, and Blason Rosé, as well as GH Mumm vintage 2004 and its 100% Pinot Noir Blanc de Noirs Mumm de Verzenay 1998, tasters were asked to identify whether the wines were made with predominantly white grapes or red, and what style of Champagne was in the glass.

Speaking at last week’s Champagne Assembly, Professor Charles Spence, head of the Crossmodal Research Group at Oxford University, who conducted the experiment on behalf of Pernod Ricard, congratulated one of the tasters, Michael Edwards, on correctly identifying the Blanc de Noirs, but said that the experts were “very bad” at distinguishing “the red of Pinot Noir from the white of Chardonnay”.

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