So, generally when I meet people who are into things like winemaking and oenology I assume they’re totally cheesy (no pun intended) and bourgy…until proven otherwise.  Wendy MacNaughton, however, makes winemaking seem absolutely charming in her column post, The Winemaker of Bolinas. Her illustrated column, “Meanwhile,” features this and other illustrations of, for instance, the regulars of the San Francisco Public Library. Also, she’s recently had a set of illustrations published in the New York Times titled “Favorite Snacks of the Great Writers.” Fun!

"you'd think"

my favorite illustration

*Images from The Winemakers of Bolinas by Wendy MacNaughton

My suspicion of wine snobbery turned into something close to disdain after reading one of Jonah Lehrer’s blog posts. He reports the results of a couple of studies conducted on wine tasting and wine preference:

Of course, the wine preferences of the subjects were clearly nonsensical. Instead of acting like rational agents – getting the most utility for the lowest possible price – they were choosing to spend more money for an identical product.

Although the subjects had just listed the $90 wine as the most pleasant, they now completely reversed their preferences. When the tasting was truly blind, when the subjects were no longer biased by their prefrontal cortex, the cheapest wine got the highest ratings.

You should also read his post about the “Stanford Marshmallow Experiment” if you haven’t already. It’ll blow your mind, while simultaneously make you crave marshmallows.

homemade marshmallows from Smitten Kitchen

That’s all for today. Anticipate more frequent posts from me.