Does wine really taste different at a higher altitude

words Alexa Wang

There are several reasons why people choose to fly by private jet, including saving time and the ability to reach destinations other airlines can’t access. Yet for many, fine dining on a private jet is an unbeatable perk. As a staple for luxury travel, flyers should be treated to a dining set-up that feels as though they could be on the ground. And even better if the end destination is an extension of the fine dining experience on the flight. But how do you achieve this? Here’s some insight into fine dining on a private jet, and of course, the accompanying wine.

wine higher altitude

The experience of dining at an altitude

When dining on a private jet, the experience is undoubtedly elevated compared to commercial flights. Not only are you in more comfortable surroundings, but the way that the food is prepared makes all the difference. On a private jet, everything is taken care of for you as soon as you book.

To dine well while in the air, certain elements need to be considered. It takes a combination of art and science to achieve this. Think healthy seasonal menus with help from private chefs and Michelin-starred restaurants – private jet company VistaJet has everything covered with the freshest, highest quality ingredients for guests to enjoy.

Choosing the perfect wine to accompany your meal

Dining high above the ground on a private jet is a spectacular experience. But what about that all-important glass of wine to accompany the meal? Does drinking wine at altitude really make a difference to the experience? The experts at VistaJet have already put this to the test.

To refine their Wine Program, they set out to compare how the taste and smell of wine is affected by the atmosphere in a pressurised cabin by tasting the same wine on the ground and in the sky. Oxford University professor Charles Spence pointed to the level of noise experienced on a commercial flight and how this can negatively impact a person’s perception of smell and taste. By contrast, a VistaJet private plane the cabin noise is 35 decibels less than on commercial flights. Add in other comforts you simply can’t get on a commercial flight and the feeling of fine dining is far closer to what passengers are used to on the ground.

Even though VistaJet’s aircraft fly at 45,000 feet, they have an equivalent air pressure of just 4,500 feet, which significantly reduces the sensory pressures of travelling by air. The wines are hand-picked by Thomas Flohr and if you need a little help choosing, you can use the ‘Wine in the Sky’ questionnaire. This book is compiled by experts such as Sofia Coppola and Andrea Bocelli, and compiles the most appropriate wines that take into account the conditions when flying.

That’s what makes their Wine Program stand out – on top of the fact that you can touch down in exclusive vineyards such as Clos de Tart and Château Smith Haut Lafitte, where you can enjoy a three-day tour.

Liquid Icons

When it comes to appreciating premium wines, the Golden Vines Awards hosted by Liquid Icons, is the crème de la crème. The awards create an opportunity to champion fine wine from all over the globe, while supporting the Gerard Basset Foundation, to foster inclusivity and diversity in this space. VistaJet are sponsoring the Golden Vine Awards.

“We are proud to support The Gerard Basset Foundation in fostering global diversity, equity and inclusion in the industry, to bring more voices, more ideas, and discover new facets of winemaking,” Matteo Atti, Executive Vice President of Marking and Innovation at VistaJet explains, “We strive to support talent to continue innovating the VistaJet Wine Program with new, vibrant and exciting notes. Because wine is an experience best shared.”



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