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Is Your Taste in Wine in Your DNA?

Is Your Taste in Wine in Your DNA?

Laurita Winery , Wine Science , Wine Weirdness 🕔October 31, 2016 0 comments

We like wine. You probably guessed that, since we’re a winery and all. And we guess that you like wine, too! Why else would you be reading a wine blog? When you like wine, you try new wines. The problem with trying new wines is that you find the good ones… and you also find the bad ones. Boy, do ya.

But the days of picking dodgy bottles of plonk may finally be over.

That got our attention when we read it on Vice. Got yours, too? They go on.

According to a California-based startup, we could be just one swab of saliva away from enjoying our dream glass of wine.


Vinome promises the “ultimate personalized wine experience”, through genetic testing and taste profiling.

In fact, there are over 400 genes that code for the cells on our tongue and in our nose that allow us to distinguish between different tastes and smells (called taste and olfactory receptors). Even small variations in the DNA code for these genes can result in BIG changes in the way you taste and smell, and explain why you may love kale and Brussels sprouts salad, while your dinner date turns up his or her nose.

Makes sense to us. It’s the same reason some people can’t eat cilantro (for people with a certain genetic makeup it tastes like soap).

You begin the Vinome experience with a series of questions about your personal tastes and preferences.


Next comes a DNA swab.


The folks at Vinome then combine and compare the DNA results with the flavor profile you’ve provided.

The result? A simple genetic test that reveals the code to your Vinome – your unique, distinct wine palate, defined by your DNA.

Vinome will then deliver hand selected bottles of wine, perfectly matched to your genetic palate.


As Vice points out, however, your own personally matched bottle of wine don’t come cheap.

Before you’ve even taken a sip, Vinome’s genetic testing service will set you back $199 and bottles retail at around $65, with a minimum three-bottle purchase. However much your genomes light up at the first sip of pinot noir, that dent in your bank balance will surely knock you harder than the morning after.

Still, we think it’s an interesting concept!

If nothing else, you could try the initial tests and selections as a guide toward future purchases. If you’re still learning, this might be a way to determine your preferences without tasting so many wines!

Of course… for those of us who really like wine, trying it all is the fun part. Well worth the ‘bad’ to discover a new ‘good’ or even a ‘wonderful’! If you jump straight to ‘perfect’, you miss the trip.

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