My scores

Bedömning av en Blanc de BlancsThe scores in this blog use the Parker scale, or at least my (mis)interpretation of it. This means that the lowest score is 50 and the highest 100. An extensive explanation of the scale by Bob Parker himself can be found on the webpage The Wine Advocate Rating System.

To evaluate wines of very different styles using one and the same, finely divided numerical scale, is not easy. Some would even claim it is impossible. Since I actually write down numbers here, I obviously don’t agree entirely with that opinion. I do however often avoid giving a single, unreserved score by using intervals, question marks, and parentheses, so you will often see something like “87-88 p?”.

Rather than just evaluating ”how happy did this wine make right now”, I also try to weigh in its potential for development in my score, and to some extent consider how good it is within its ”peer style”, which at least to some small extent means trying to consider how others would appreciate it. The reason for this is that I actually attempt at writing for an audience rather than just keeping a wine tasting diary. But ultimately it is nothing but my palate and my preferences that will be the basis of my evaluation, so you may not agree with everything I write. For example, if you think that all New World wines are better than French wines, that oak always makes a white wine better, or that no off-dry or semi-sweet white wines are ever drinkable, you are unlikely to agree with me on all my scores.

Why the Parker scale? I’ve been writing down my impressions of many wines for several years, but I haven’t systematically scored the wines I have tasted on any widely used scale. Instead, I have often used something like OK / Good / Very good, modified by + and – and sometimes also (+) and (-). However, when I read how major wine critics rate a wine I often ask myself ”do I agree?” This often is equivalent to asking myself ”which score on the Parker scale would I assign to this wine?”, since this scale is also used by e.g. Wine Spectator and many others, including many critics who don’t really agree with Parker’s own taste (or what it’s construed to be by those who are critical of him). The 20 point scale would have been an alternative, since it is more or less officially used in some wine tasting clubs where I have been active, and also used by many British wine writers. However, I’ve never gotten used to applying this specific scale, and there have been many more occasions to compare my impressions to scores using the Parker scale. So if I have to write down numbers, the 20 point scale doesn’t seem like the most direct route to me.

Finally, I would like to point at that both very positive and very negative opinions on wines, their pricing and other things will be posted on this blog. I will write down my honest evaluation also in those instances when I find a wine substandard. Unless you like this type of straightforward evaluation, reading this blog is probably not for you. If you prefer only superlatives and positive evaluations, I’m sure you are able to find many other wine-related webpages more to your liking. And those of you that I didn’t manage to scare away with this statement – welcome!

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