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The Wine Curmudgeon’s 100-point scoring system

100p-point scoring systemYes, it’s silly, but is it any sillier – or any less accurate – than the rest of the 100-point systems?

The Wine Curmudgeon’s antipathy to wine scores is well known – they are often lazy, even more often too subjective to be worthwhile, and even biased.

But since I’ve been told I need to be more than merely negative, please consider the Wine Curmudgeon’s 100-point scoring system:

• Is it wine? If yes, 75 points.

• Is the wine red, white, pink, or sparkling? If yes, 5 points.

• Does it have a screwcap? If yes, 5 points.

• Does the wine cost $12 or less? If yes, 5 points.

The total? 90 points for most of the wine I buy.

Yes, this might seem silly and not even particularly accurate. Which is the point.

Is it any sillier than the scores used by the Winestream Media, where price, varietal and region seem to have as much to do with determining the score as the quality of the wine? And is it any less accurate than a system without any standards, and where one critic’s 94 can be another critic’s 87?

Of course not. The only way to determine whether you like a wine is to taste it. You can take suggestions from me or Robert Parker or any of the hundreds of us who do this. But in the end, the decision is yours. Or, as I was told all those years ago when I started doing this: “If you don’t like chocolate ice cream, and someone tells you that chocolate is better than vanilla, would you go out and buy chocolate ice cream? Of course not. So why would you do that with wine?”

Cartoon courtesy of Bob Johnson, using a Creative Commons license

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2 thoughts on “The Wine Curmudgeon’s 100-point scoring system

  • By Kyle - Reply

    I think you should start using your new system!!

  • By Doug - Reply

    Doug’s 100-point scoring system for wine writers:
    50 pts for having a pulse (I am not as generous as the Wine Curmudgeon)
    20 pts for correct spelling of “Riesling”
    10 pts for correct use of “who” vs. “whom”
    10 pts for correct use of “variety” vs. “varietal”
    10 pts for wearing a cool hat.

    You do the math.

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