The Art of Winefulness

Picture the scene: On your way to a dinner party you stop to buy a bottle of wine. For some reason your usual confidence in a well-priced but relatively unknown wine is replaced by a gnawing feeling of doubt. Or maybe you’re on the clock with the babysitter and don’t have time to linger. Perhaps you just want to impress the hosts. Whatever the reason, you decide to splash out.

You arrive at the party and your special wine gets absorbed into the vortex of other bottles in a phenomenon not unlike the Bermuda Triangle – trying to retrieve it would not only be absurd, but also potentially dangerous. When, or perhaps if, your wine emerges it will be quaffed without any obvious reflection or consideration. Surely a wasted opportunity.… Read more >

The Placebo Effect

Not that long ago, a study by Stanford neuro-economist Baba Shiv proved that when people are told a product is expensive, they extract more pleasure from it.

This is not a hugely surprising revelation, particularly in relation to … Read more >