Orson Welles made commercial history back in the 1970s by intoning for Paul Masson Winery, “We will sell no wine before its time.”
Today, that time could be in as little as 15 minutes, at least according to the makers of a soon-to-debut device that purports to be able to mimic the mellowing effects of aging on wine. The Wine Wizard uses a machine called the Agronifier, developed by Ferris Holding of Las Vegas, that can allegedly increase a wine’s pH, thus reducing acidity and sulfites through a process called Electromagnetic Treatment Matrix (ETM).
Ferris Holding claims that in more than 150 blind taste tests, mostly on wines in the $6 to $12-a-bottle range, some 97 percent of tasters said the flavor of red wine was improved by the ETM process, while 90 percent said it improved the wine’s aroma. White wine taste tests were reported to be almost as positive, with 85 of tasters indicating improved flavor, though with no discernible effects on aroma.
Wine Wizard owner CleanPath Resources Group even claims the device is capable of mellowing hard liquor, from vodka to single-malt scotch. CEO Ken Lewis calls it “amazing,” and says the Wine Wizard should go on sale by the end of the year. Dessert wines and bubbly, however, are seemingly immune to ETM’s beneficial effects, reportedly defeated by high sugar levels and carbonation.
Not everyone is as enamored of the Wine Wizard as its owners, however, with one website questioning the effectiveness of the Agronifier and having less than kind words for Lewis and CleanPath. We’ll see. As they say, the proof is in the wine glass.