A multi-sensory and embodied understanding of wine consumption

Annamma Joy, Steven Charters, Jeff Jianfeng Wang, Bianca Grohmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


This study investigates the multi-sensory responses experienced by consumers in consuming and evaluating wine, and further identifies the differences in wine consumption experiences by novice wine consumers versus those of wine experts. How those experiences are shaped by consumer levels of knowledge regarding wine, and are defined by emotion, memory, and responses to the aesthetic experience of wine consumption, are identified via a multi-year ethnographic study. Through interviews, observations, and wine tastings with novices and experts, the authors examine the role of embodiment in wine consumption, whose impact is lacking in extant literature. Embodiment processes in wine consumption can be understood at the conscious level using Merleau-Ponty’s [(1962). The phenomenology of perception (C. Smith, Trans.). Kegan Paul] concept of perception and virtual enactments. At the unconscious level, as the authors report, consumers and wineries alike use conceptual metaphors and conceptual blending to understand the wine consumption process. This research contributes to a deeper understanding of embodiment processes through the application of Merleau-Ponty’s theory of perceptions/virtual enactments, as well as through metaphor and conceptual integration analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-264
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Wine Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • appearance
  • aroma
  • British Columbia
  • consumer
  • consumer research
  • consumption
  • mouth feel
  • perception
  • Wine
  • wine quality
  • wine tasting

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