Sunday, March 1, 2009

California contest offers unique criteria

This note on an upcoming wine competition comes courtesy of Jim Trezise and his weekly
e-letter from the New York Wine & Grape Foundation.

LODI INTERNATIONAL WINE AWARDS scheduled for March 8-9 isn’t just another wine competition, as one would expect when Tim Hanni and Pooch Pucilowski are running the show. It’s based on the premise that different people taste differently in terms of sensitivities (hypersensitive, sensitive, and tolerant are the three basic categories), which applies to both judges and consumers alike. The judges are screened according to those categories, including an actual counting of their tastebuds, then placed on panels so there’s a balance. The final awards are provided in a way that consumers can find the wines that best match their own preferences by the judges with similar sensitivities. And wineries which enter the competition receive a sensory evaluation of each wine to determine where the wines fall along the sensitivity continuum, as well as receiving access to “taste budometer” technology that can help determine the taste preferences of their customers. The awards ceremony and tasting will take place on May 1 in Lodi, CA. More info is available at