Writing a new book: time to do some research

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Writing a new book: time to do some research

i taste red

This week I had a new book commissioned. It’s one I have wanted to write for a while.

Entitled ‘I taste red’, it explores the interesting topic of the flavour of wine, and its perception. There is so much to explore here: taste, smell, perception, psychophysics, philosophy, synaesthesia, the language of wine, aesthetic appraisal, ratings, competitions, and lots more.

Already, I have started my research. I think the time is right for a more realistic and rich appraisal of what it means to experience wine. When we taste a wine, we are not acting as measuring devices: there’s a lot more going on. We bring a lot to the wine tasting process. A score is not a property of a bottle.

There’s a lot of interesting scientific work on the nature of sensory perception, and it’s really interesting to apply this to wine. After all, we’re frequently writing tasting notes, and sharing our perceptions in terms of words.

I’m coming to the conclusion that the separation of the senses is actually quite artificial. Our sensation is a unity: we experience a seamless view of what is out there: truly multimodal.

And it’s also a subject that has interested linguists. What are the best ways to talk about wine? What makes for a good tasting note? Should we use more descriptive terms, or allow ourselves to use more figurative language?

If you are interested in this topic and would like to connect, then I’d love to hear from you. I’m just two days into my research, and already I have learned so much.

7 Comments on Writing a new book: time to do some research
wine journalist and flavour obsessive

7 thoughts on “Writing a new book: time to do some research

  1. As I saw the image in my RSS, I hoped for an amazon link inside the article. So definitely interested 😉

  2. Hi Tim

    I teach wine marketing & sales at Napa Valley College, UC Davis, and other institutions. I’d love to talk with you about this, and some of the basic research I do each year with my students.

    of course you’ll have read Brochet’s work—excellent stuff.
    Paul Wagner

  3. It would be of great interest if you also blogged on where ,when,why you came upon new sources and references ,as you progress

  4. My doctoral thesis was on the value of considering affect as the senses, sensation and emotion, together. Funny now, making and selling wine rather than being an academic, I’m still talking about the same issues!

    Best of luck with the research and writing. Fascinating topic.

  5. Agree, good luck with the book. Will make for an interesting read for sure. Great comments here too.

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