Price Information Influences the Subjective Experience of Wine: A Framed Field Experiment
Past experimental laboratory and correlational data from observational research has shown that knowledge of the price of wine influences the consumer’s subjective experience. However, there is limited prior research that has explicitly manipulated price information in a realistic wine tasting setting.
A total of 140 participants tasted three different low-, mid- and high-priced wines with open, deceptive, or no price information and rated them for taste intensity and pleasantness.
In this community sample, intensity of taste ratings for open, deceptive and blind price information reflected retail prices, thus more expensive wines were rated as more intense in taste. However, while pleasantness ratings did not differ for open and no price information, deceptive up-pricing of low-price wine significantly influenced ratings for pleasantness, whereas deceptive down-pricing of high-price wine had no effect on pleasantness ratings.
Pricing information differentially influences the consumer’s subjective experience of wine, with no effects on intensity of taste ratings and no effects on pleasantness ratings with correct or no price information, but increased pleasantness of low-price wine when provided with a deceptive higher price. Thus, in wine may lay the truth, but its subjective experience may also lie in the price.