Have you ever wondered if someone had the good idea of sending a bottle of wine into space?
Well yes, some companies have experimented with how the absence of gravity can affect the characteristics of wine.
For example, in 2019, the Californian wine company, Apogee, sent 12 bottles of Pinot Noir wine into space with the help of the private spaceflight company Space X. The bottles were stored for a year in space, on board the International Space Station (ISS), before being brought back to Earth for analysis.
Furthermore, in 2020, the French company, Pétrus, sent bottles of wine into space to celebrate their 70th anniversary. The bottles of Chateau Petrus Pomerol 2000 wine (now sold at around 5,000 eur per bottle) were launched aboard a rocket of the private spaceflight company ArianeSpace.
These experiments were mainly carried out to study the effects of microgravity, cosmic radiation and extreme temperatures on wine preservation.
In order to assess the effects of weightlessness, a blind tasting was organised at the Institut des Sciences de la Vigne et du Vin and the 12 sommeliers were able to compare the Chateau Petrus 2000 stored in space with the one stored on earth.
The results of the tasting of these two wines were different but all agreed that the two bottles of wine evolved differently, let's see how.
According to British journalist Jane Anson, the Petrus left on earth turned out in the tasting to be more closed and tannic, therefore as if it were younger than the Petrus kept in space; however, further analysis will be necessary to understand how gravity accelerated the ageing of the wine.
For those who want to keep their feet on the ground and cannot afford a ride on a nice rocket from Elon Must, I recommend some simple wine accessories to test how the wine's taste might evolve:
- a silver sphere to eliminate sulphur dioxide and oxygenate the wine
- a wine decanter allows oxygenation of the wine making it more harmonious
- a balloon glass you can simply let the wine breathe in a large balloon and see how it will change during the tasting.
Enjoy the tasting!