The 1st ever blind taste test comparing wine from a bottle and the IDENTICAL wine from a can was recently conducted by WICresearch.com, a leading wine-in-a-can marketing research and consulting company, founded by Dr. Robert L. Williams, Jr. and colleagues from Texas Tech University; Dr. Helena Williams and PhD student Matthew Bauman. It is the 1st study comparing Bottled vs. Canned wine.
This blind taste test was part of a larger, cutting-edge research initiative that since 2016 has included surveys of over 3,500 people regarding various market-defining aspects of wine-in-a-can:
- 1st Quantitative Wine-in-Can survey (2018)
- 1st Quantitative WIC survey focused on 17 brand images (2019)
- 1st International Canned Wine Competition (2019)
Both Dr. Williams’ were judges in the 1st Annual International Canned Wine Competition held last month in the Mendocino County, Anderson Valley AVA, in Boonville, CA.
- Over 200 canned wines from around the world
- Insomnia Wines won 3 Gold Medals and Best of Show Red for California Pinot Noir
- Sans Wine Co. 2017 Rutherford Napa Valley Riesling awarded Best of Show White Wine
- Benmarl Winery of New York took home 3 Gold Medal, as did Leelanau Cellars from Michigan
- Results included 37 Gold Medals, including Best of Show – Red, and Best of Show – White
1st Blind taste test: identical wine, bottle vs. can (2019)
- Identical wine from same winery was poured from bottle, or can, into cup
- Blind taste test was held at two locations (local University, and Nissley Vineyards)
- Total of 86 random participants, aged 21-74
- Wines included a Dry Chardonnay (Coyote Moon, 1,000 Islands, NY), a Dry Riesling (Villa Bellangelo Vineyards, Can Do Finger Lakes, NY), a Dry Rose (Bridge Lane, Long Island, NY), and Sparkling Sweet Moscato (Coyote Moon, NY). Crackers and water were provided each participant
- Full results are being prepared for a Journal article. Preliminary results were presented by Dr. Williams at the recent Wines & Vines Packaging Conference held in Yountville, CA, the heart of Napa Valley
- When asked the question “Have you tried wine-in-a-can before”, the responses were split exactly half
-50% replied Yes, 50% relied No
a. Interestingly, a higher percentage of Male tasters (63.6%) had tried wine-in-a-can, while out of all the Female tasters only 48.3% had tried it
- A total of 57% (Agree/Strongly Agree) self-identified as having higher subjective wine knowledge than their peers
- On the question regarding “I prefer Wine A, Wine B, No Difference”
a. Preliminary conclusions suggest that tasters reported NO strong preferences between the identical wine packaged in a Can, vs. packaged in a Bottle
OVERALL (Table 1)
48.5 % preferred Bottle, while 51.1% preferred Can or indicated they found No Difference.
BY WINE (Table 1)
While all four wines showed greater Can preferences or No Difference, Dry Rose and Dry Riesling showed the greatest difference.
Table 1 Blind Taste Test Preferences
4. Winemakers should not make assumptions about the consumer profile of wine-in-a-can drinkers
Our research suggests that demand is not solely a factor of gender nor age. And most significantly, regardless of subjective wine knowledge, the awareness, trial and purchasing practices showed no differences in all three of our studies. This market is driven by 6 Motivations: Convenience, Occasion Location, Sustainability/Cost savings, Quality, Portion control/Variability and Visual Image/Branding.