How to score?
First and foremost, scoring is subjective. Preferences in taste differ between individuals, therefore what one person perceives as a sensational wine (and thus score highly) may be utterly crap to another. Neither one is wrong, just differences in taste preferences. So why bother scoring? Well part of the fun in wines (and beers) is exploring new ones you haven’t had before and trying to figure out what to try next. Although everyone have different tastes, you might still find others that have similar likes and dislikes to yours. Part of the aim here is to provide a way to follow others with similar tastes giving you a guide on what you wish to try next
General Scoring Scale Explained
Here we use a scoring system that scales from 1 to 10 in 0.1 steps, so essentially a 100 pt scale. So why not just use a 100 pt scale? Scoring on a 10 pt scale is just easier and less intimidating than trying to figure out if your wine is worth 94 or 93 pts, having 0.1 steps gives the flexibility and option for those who want to fine tuned their scoring matching a 100 pt scale. Best of both worlds!
How the scores are weighted
We have broken down wine scoring into three criteria: Aroma & Smell, Taste & Length, and Value.
- Aroma & Smell, Taste & Length – Both criteria are each worth 50 % of the total score.
- Value – This criteria is worth 0 % of the total score. This tells you if the wine is a bargain buy or not but doesn’t change the overall score of the wine itself.
Aroma & Smell, Taste & Length
Smell the wine, does it attract you?
- Is it appealing and pleasant?
- Or is it repugnant and smells like rotten eggs?
- Is it what you expected from that varietal?
How does it taste?
- Does it fill your mouth with strong fruit flavours?
- Are the tannins present and well integrated?
- Is it light and refreshing or bold and powerful?
- Does the taste linger in your mouth for an extended period?
|Less than 5.0||The wine is not pleasant and you would not buy (again).|
|5.0 to 7.0||A pass, this generally means the wine is not particularly unpleasant nor pleasant, “It’s OK”. Doesn’t turn you off from tasting the wine. You’d drink it if it was given to you but you wouldn’t buy it. It’s a nice wine but just lacks something that would make go “I’d buy that”.|
|7.0 to 9.0||A 7.0 score means it’s something you would definitely buy. Both the aroma and taste gives you satisfaction that you’d buy it to drink anytime. Anything above 7.5 is considered a great wine, and above 8.5 fantastic (a 7.5 would be consider a Distinction and an 8.5 would be considered a High Distinction on an academic scale).|
|9.0 and above||An exemplary wine, one that you would describe as a showcase for its varietal. Wines in this class would give you great pleasure in its aroma even without tasting the wine. The taste has a wow factor that grabs you and before you know it your glass (or bottle even) is empty. Anything 9.0 and above should be something that you have dreams about and leaves you lasting memories.|
Here we try to score how much you think the wine is worth. Whether it’s a bargain buy or overpriced. As a consumer, this might be a contributing factor when deciding between two similar wines.
|Less than 5.0||The wine is not worth it’s retail price.|
|5.0 to 7.0||A pass, this generally means the wine is priced as expected.|
|7.0 to 9.0||Good value and would not hesitate to buy. Cheaper than what you expected to pay for this quality.|
|9.0 and above||The price is a bargain and you would expect to pay double its retail price for the quality you are getting.|
For beers the scoring is a little bit more simple, we’ve narrowed it down to one score worth 100%. It uses the same 10 pt scale with 0.1 steps as the wine scoring system and based on the same criteria as described for Aroma & Smell, Taste & Length section above.
You might notice that our scoring system results in lower overall scores compared to other review sites. Unless you’re in marketing, the lower overall scores do not matter as long as you’re consistent with your scoring. A score of 7.0 here is a perfectly good wine/beer (and probably equates to something closer to 90+ pts on most other review sites). What this does is allow a bigger distribution of scores for good wines and finer grain for distinguishing scores for comparable wines/beers.