On Wine



A Gender Bender

Women Like These Wines More Than Men Do

by Fred McMillin


Dr. Marcia Pelchat, Monell Chemical Senses Center, Philadelphia, has found that women are superior to men in smell and taste sensitivity.
           —Wine Spectator Magazine

In view of this, we checked the results of the last 100 wines tasted in our Fort Mason wine classes (S.F. City College) to find the wines that women rated higher than men. Here they are, with the highest-scoring bottle listed last. That is, according to the ladies' palates, the further you read, the better the wine.


The Wines

Rank   Wine
7th - Chardonnay, Coastal Ridge, California, 2004, $7"
6th - Zinfandel, Rodney Strong, Knotty Vines, 2003, $19
5th - Chardonnay, Three Thieves Winery, California, 2005, $11 for liter jug
4th - Mumm Napa Reserve Brut Sparkler, $25
3rd - Mercury Rising blend of Bordeaux varietals, Cinnabar Winery, California, 2002, $18
2nd - Menage a Trois Rosé, Folie a Deux Winery, California, 2005, $10

And the big enchilada...

1st - Framboisified Port of Syrah dessert wine, Bonny Doon, $16 for 500 ml.


1. The men and the women AGREED on rating 93 of 100 wines. Remarkable.

2. The 100 wines included many over $25 but all the expensive wines were rated about the same by women and men.

As for the wines favored by the fairer sex...

3. Both the Chardonnays were light, not big, buttery bombshells. Perhaps the ladies could detect flavors the men couldn't.

4. The two reds both had dominate berry flavors—not a lot of oak, leather, etc.

5. Three of the top four were a pink, a sparkler, and a fruit-laden dessert wine. Nice variety. Lets use them in a menu.


Dinner with Wines That Should Please the Ladies

* As the guests arrive, greet them with a choice between the pink and the sparkler.

* First course: Serve either Chardonnay with Grace Chu's Shrimp Toast.

* Main course: Offer a choice between either of the reds with James Beard's Marinated Flank Steak.

* Serve the dessert wine with Madeira Cake. If youd like the recipe my wife developed for her cooking classes, send me your FAX number. I can't e-mail it.


And A Final Wine Smile

Bonny Doon's name for their bottling of Germany's most famous grape: "The Heart Has Its Rieslings."


About the Writer

Fred McMillin, a veteran wine writer, has taught wine history for 30 years on three continents. For information about the wine courses he teaches every month at either San Francisco State University or San Francisco City College (Fort Mason Division), please fax him at (415) 567-4468.


Copyright © 2006, Fred McMillin. All rights reserved.


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This page created October 2006

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