Saturday, October 6, 2012

Wines that fly do not always take off

WHY does flying in a cabin at 30,000 feet affect aroma and flavour perception? Fatigued palates, inappropriate food and wine service temperatures and a cabin’s lack of fresh oxygen all inhibit taste. But the most curious factor is the cabin's white noise. Paul Sapin makes airline wines on an industrial scale in France. They are not intended to express terroir - like airline meals, they need to do battle in the sky. Taittinger’s Comtes de Champagne won best First Class Sparkling Wine for Air France in Business Traveller's Cellars in the Sky competition (held recently in a London hotel). Does this delicate Champagne taste of anything at 30,000 feet?

Full article first published in The Connexion (October, 2012)