If you are still questioning why you should spend that extra cash on getting that expensive bottle of wine, scientists have provided a befitting answer to that.
The answer is steeped in the fact that more expensive wines taste better than the cheaper brands you would rather opt for. Researchers in in Germany and France have arrived at an explanation why more expensive wine taste better on the palate. Their findings also relates to the reward areas of the brain, aside from the palate.
Bernd Weber, of Germany’s Bonn University, conducted the research with France’s INSEAD Business School, and published in the journal, “Scientific Reports’’ on Tuesday.
“The reward system is activated in a significantly stronger fashion with higher prices and in this way apparently also the taste experience.
“The fascinating question is now whether we can train the reward system so that it is less susceptible to such ‘placebo marketing’ effects,’’ Weber said.
The experiment made use of 15 men and 15 women, placed in a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner for a wine tasting. Each participant was told the price of the wine before drinking a millilitre through a hose.
After drinking, they required to press a button to evaluate the taste of the wine on a nine-point scale. While the wine was always the same wine, the price was given as 3.50, 7 or 21.15 dollars for a bottle.
“As expected, the test subjects claimed that the wine with the higher price tasted better than the cheaper wine,’’ INSEAD researcher Hilke Plassmann said.
The MRI scanner further showed that the frontal lobes and the ventral striatum said to be involved in reward processing and motivation were more active with the higher prices.
“In the end, it seems like the reward and motivation system is playing a trick on us,’’ INSEAD researcher Liane Schmidt concluded.