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Sacré Bleu! Wine Floods Streets of French Town after ‘Act of Sabotage’ 

With 200,000–400,000 French expatriates, London has become France’s sixth-largest city.

A town in southern France saw its streets running red last night but this was not about revelry.

The town of Sete, near Montpellier was drenched in red wine on Tuesday night after the contents of five huge vats of wine were spilled onto the streets.

The plonk flooded into local basements, car parks, and even some people’s homes, reported the local Midi Libre newspaper.frenchman

Up to 50,000 litres of the tipple belonging to the Biron distributors were spilled, according to reports.

Emergency services were quick to the scene and had the mess cleared up in 30 minutes, the paper reported.

On Wednesday afternoon, the radical group of wine producers CRAV (Comité régional d’action viticole) claimed responsibility for the move, reported France 3.

The group has infamously carried out numerous wine-related attacks in France, irate at foreign cheap wine making its way onto the shelves of French stores and supermarkets.

French farmers' wine dumping sparks anger in Spain Read the rest of this entry »

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Robotic Wine Tasting Nanosensor Can Perform Better than Inferior Human Wine Critics

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Artificial Tongue Application Potential Not Yet Fully Explored But We Suspect You Have Ideas Not Mentioned Here

This might the first post we’ve done that falls into the categories “Food & Drink” and “Robotics”. I have a feeling it won’t be the last. TechCrunch reports:

Researchers in Denmark have created an artificial tongue to find out whether expensive wine actually tastes any better than therobot-tongue-300 cheap stuff.

The research, first published in ACS Nano, claims that an optical nanosensor based on surface plasmon resonance (SPR) can discern how you experience the sensation of dryness in wine. And they say this nanosensor can judge the way the tannins will hit your flavor sensors better than the finest wine critic can.

Some may argue that it takes a human, not a robot, to discover what is worth a sip. However, the researchers at Arhaus University argue that the nanosensor is free from the human critic’s personal prejudice. They may have a point. There’s a lot that goes into making wine taste a certain way. Everything from the variety of the grape to the minerals in the soil to what kind of sunlight the grapes received chemically affects the taste and smell of the wine from season to season – in even the same grape.

According to MarketWatch, over 31.4 billion 750 ml bottles of wine are bought and sold throughout the world every year. While some standard ratings have been placed on wine and ROBOTS_B_400there’s a decent following in wine personalities and what they recommend, everyone has different tastes in what they like. This makes it particularly hard to decide which wine will do at the local grocery store. Read the rest of this entry »


Specialty Wine for Discriminating Feline Consumers

The release of a specialty wine just for cats this week in Japan got plenty of Internet buzz, but cats themselves have been far less enthusiastic.
A cat eyes a glass of Nyan Nyan Nouveau, recently released in Japan especially for cats.

A cat eyes a glass of Nyan Nyan Nouveau, recently released in Japan especially for cats.

Yumi Otagaki reports:  Nyan Nyan Nouveau is a non-alcoholic wine for cats whose owners want to share some quality time with them, and who will spend some money to do so. In Japanese, “nyan nyan” is the sound cats supposedly make, like “meow” in English.

A 180-milliter bottle of Nyan Nyan Nouveau sells for ¥399 ($4.10) over the Internet, and will be available in pet stores and supermarkets in time for the release of Beaujolais Nouveau in mid-November, according to Masahito Tsurumi, chief executive of B&H Lifes, the company that makes it. Based in Aichi prefecture, central Japan, and originally an offshoot of a sake brewer, B&H Lifes already sells supplement drinks, non-alcoholic beer, wine and sake for dogs.

Nyan Nyan Nouveau was created in response to requests from cat owners, Mr. Tsurumi said.

Read the rest of this entry »