Understanding the sensory attributes that explain the typicity of Australian Cabernet Sauvignon wines is essential for increasing value and growth of Australia’s reputation as a fine wine producer. Content analysis of 2598 web-based wine reviews from well-known wine writers, including tasting notes and scores, was used to gather information about the regional profiles of Australian Cabernet Sauvignon wines and to create selection criteria for further wine studies. In addition, a wine expert panel evaluated 84 commercial Cabernet Sauvignon wines from Coonawarra, Margaret River, Yarra Valley and Bordeaux, using freely chosen descriptions and overall quality scores. Using content analysis software, a sensory lexicon of descriptor categories was built and frequencies of each category for each region were computed. Distinction between the sensory profiles of the regions was achieved by correspondence analysis (CA) using online review and expert panellist data. Wine quality scores obtained from reviews and experts were converted into Australian wine show medal categories. CA of assigned medal and descriptor frequencies revealed the sensory attributes that appeared to drive medal-winning wines. Multiple factor analysis of frequencies from the reviews and expert panellists indicated agreement about descriptors that were associated with wines of low and high quality, with greater alignment at the lower end of the wine quality assessment scale.
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