Wine psychology: basic & applied.
Basic cognitive research can help to explain our response to wine, and the myriad factors that affect it. Wine is a complex, culture-laden, multisensory stimulus, and our perception/experience of its properties is influenced by everything from the packaging in which it is presented through the glassware in which it is served and evaluated. A growing body of experiential wine research now demonstrates that a number of contextual factors, including everything from the colour of the ambient lighting through to background music can exert a profound, and in some cases predictable, influence over the tasting experience. Sonic seasoning - that is, the matching of music or soundscapes with specific wines in order to accentuate or draw attention to certain qualities/attributes in the wine, such as sweetness, length, or body, also represents a rapidly growing area of empirical study. While such multisensory, experiential wine research undoubtedly has a number of practical applications, it also provides insights concerning multisensory perception that are relevant to basic scientists. Furthermore, the findings of the wine research are also often relevant to those marketers interested in understanding how the consumers' perception of any other food or beverage product can potentially be modified.