my all-new wine rating scale!

Monday, November 14, 2011


How many blogs have been written about the 100 point rating scale? Probably hundreds. How would you rate them? On average, I’d give them an 85. The main arguments that make sense (if you dislike the system) are that 1) it really comes down to a 10 point scale and 2) the ratings tend to cluster around 87-88 for the vast majority of wines.

So what’s the point?

This is what has led me to devise an all-new rating scale that addresses these pressing issues and actually pinpoints, with amazing exactitude, what each number on the scale means!

I share it with you in the spirit of the holidays, at no charge. Your enduring gratitude is the only thanks I need. So, here goes....

Introducing, the 10 Point Bo Derek-inspired Wine Rating System.

Like all good systems, it actually over-delivers (there are 11 possible scores, not just 10). Each number specifically relates to a detailed overview of the wine being scored. It works for all wines – red, white, pink, dry, sweet, sparkling, you name it. And best of all, it’s so simple, even your 6 year old child can begin rating wines (watered down, of course) in preparation for an exciting career as a full-blown wine critic!

The points, and their meaning:

0 – undrinkable plonk
1 – only to be drunk when alone, preferably on a desert island
2 – has one redeeming feature (eg. cheap, buzz-worthy, or free)
3 – will do if it cost less than $5
4 – pretty much all corporate, line-priced, animal/truck/dress etc. wines get a 4
5 – the exception to 4 – it tastes like [yellowtail] only better
6 – the wine is varietal, reasonably balanced, and worth what you paid for it
7 – the wine is a clever blend of many grapes, but with style and distinction
8 – the wine is a top tier varietal or blend, from a prestigious AVA, but over-priced for its quality
9 – the wine rocks, and you don’t care what it is; you just want more
10 – you immediately buy a case after drinking the first bottle

11 comments:

Troy said...

I could see this catching on. Not necessarily in wine magizines or on store shelves, but in the blogosphere and among the average Joe wine consumer. I think most of the wines I drink would end up in the 6-9 range, with the occasional 10 pointer. I've found many 3 point wines at the local grocery store, particularly at the end of the cereal isle. I think I'm going to print this out and adopt it as my prefered rating scale. Thanks Paul!

JJ said...

Close, but #9 and #10 could apply to anything you think is spectacular. I know people who think Two Buck Chuck and Yellowtail fit that description. That's no guide for the rest of us.

10 - You immediately want to buy a case, but can't possibly afford it because the wine really IS that good.

Diane Teitelbaum said...

Good scale Paul.

Maybe 10 could be a wine you never forget.

PaulG said...

Diane, I like your #10! Just like that boyfriend or girlfriend from long ago that still haunts you...

Tim said...

Awesome PaulG, You are too funny and I really appreciated the smile today!! Tim

terroirist said...

In my experience, #10 would be "you want to buy a case, but can't even buy a bottle because other winos figured out how good it was long before you, and the mailing list is full with 10,000 on the wait list."

Sean P. Sullivan said...

Paul, a friend of mine came up with the following rating scale about ten years ago. For the everyday drinker, "Get me a glass of wine (my love)!" For quality wine, "This wine is really good. I hope it gets me laid." For the top tier, "This wine is so good I would rather drink it by myself than get laid."

Anonymous said...

Bravo Paul! I will expect all future reviews to utilize this scoring system!

Madeline Puckette said...

what about "bleh," "meh," and "yeah!"

Simmer down to the bare minimum. You'll either drink it, or you wont?

Anonymous said...

How about my wife's three point scale.
Thumbs up
Thumbs down
Thumbs sideways * asterisk = How much did it cost?
Then Up or Down

Anonymous said...

the scale needs to be multi-dimensional; each point should have a sliding price adjustment...

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