Don’t Let an Algorithm Choose Your Wine

Three years ago, two MIT Grads created an algorithm that promised to choose “wine you love,” based on 18 attributes from a seven-question quiz, and your inputs would “help you branch out and discover new wines without the worry that it will be too sweet, too tart or “too whatever.” Too “whatever?” Really?  In fact, their website, Bright Cellars, asks “How would you describe yourself? Wine novice, or expert? Are there really only these two choices?

More recently, another company called First Leaf says its little quiz–nine questions–will use AI (artificial intelligence) to choose wines “personalized to your tastes.”

Don’t fall for this nonsense. The fun of wine IS finding new and different wines, from different regions/continents, grapes grown at different altitudes in different soils, reds/whites/sparklings/rosés, different styles, low/high/medium alcohol levels, young and aged, on and on. If you’re depending on a mathematical formula based on a quiz, it’s likely to recommend very similar wines…or wines that are really brands of the club itself, rather than actual independent wineries. And you’ll lose out on so much.

I’m not saying don’t join a wine club, or not to patronize Bright Cellars or First Leaf. I’m saying don’t choose your wines based on algorithms.

Wine is a journey, an exploration, not a destination!

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