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Comparison of Chinese and Australian consumers' liking responses for red wines


Corresponding author: Dr Leigh Francis, fax +61 8 8313 6601, email


Background and Aims

This study was designed to investigate the sensory attributes that relate to Chinese consumer liking responses to red wines and determine whether they differ from those of Australian consumers in a cross-cultural study.

Methods and Results

A set of Australian and international wines was profiled by a sensory descriptive analysis panel. A subset of 14 wines was assessed for hedonic liking by 310 consumers in China. These results were compared with findings of an Australian test using 216 consumers. For the Chinese sample, liking was most strongly positively associated with ‘red fruit’, ‘sweetness’ and ‘fruity aftertaste’ attributes. Two consumer clusters (80% of the consumers) preferred sweeter wines and had low acceptance to wines with strong acidity, with differences between the two clusters in their response to bitterness, ‘bruised fruit’ and ‘fresh green’ attributes. The third cluster liked wines with higher purple colour, ‘dark fruit’, ‘viscosity’ and ‘black pepper’, and had a lower liking score for wines with higher astringency. Two clusters of the Australian consumers were found with similar sensory attribute drivers of liking compared with those identified in China, but with different proportions.


The consumers from the two countries, while having broadly similar preferences, differed in both the size of cluster groups and in the importance of certain attributes.

Significance of the Study

The study provides an insight into differences in drivers of preference between an established Western wine consumer market and a developing Asian market.