Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

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Mattstolz
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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#1 Post by Mattstolz » November 5th, 2017, 7:40 am

Like the title asks. A wine is totally undrinkable. you hate it. everyone else hates it. what do you rate it?

also the flip side. whats it take to be a 100 point, 20/20 wine to you? does it have to be a WOTY? wine of a lifetime? best wine ever made?

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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#2 Post by Drew Goin » November 5th, 2017, 3:35 pm

Good question. I will have to get back to you on that.

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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#3 Post by Steve Slatcher » November 9th, 2017, 2:35 am

My scale is totally subjective. The number of stars indicates how much I enjoyed a wine at the time. No more, no less. Assume wines are not tasted blind unless I say otherwise.
* Avoid
** Just about acceptable, but I’d prefer to drink something else
*** Perfectly acceptable to good. Most wines I drink are at this level
**** Has that little something extra, e.g. intensity of flavour, complexity
***** Has a lot of something extra – a wow factor
****** Exceptionally good. Difficult to imagine how it could be improved
I don't think I have used 1* in the last few years, partly because I would often call wines to be avoided "faulty", and not score them. Most wines fall between 3* and 5*, with 2* and 6* being pulled out occasionally. Sometime I worry about personal grade inflation, but in my defence if I am going to bother writing a tasting note the wine usually has to be pretty decent anyway.

I think it is a misconception that the top score indicates perfection. if you imagine quality is infinitely variable but you have an integer scoring system, surely 100 means anything better than 99.5? In my case it is a lot more finger-in-the-air stuff, and the top scoring wines probably just hit the spot on a particular occasion. But IMO the mere fact that they are ABLE to do that is important in itself.

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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#4 Post by Brian Tuite » November 9th, 2017, 4:29 am

Apothic Red is the dregs

100pt wine? I’d like to try some 15-20yrs down the road to compare. Never personally rated anything that high. Stopped giving points years ago.
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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#5 Post by Ian Sutton » November 10th, 2017, 11:57 am

DNPIM (do not put in mouth)

More difficult for me, as I don't like scoring wines, so don't.

The only scale I ever felt moderately comfortable with was the £ (but you could substitute $) scale. Literally how much you think the wine is worth to you. Inspired by our original tasting group, where we used to say that after writing a TN. Linked to price paid, it's a rather informative scale e.g. 17.5/12 is a wine I found really good value, and 12/20 is the reverse. The lowest score is also easy on this scale : 0
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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#6 Post by F o s t e r B. » November 10th, 2017, 6:53 pm

So I've taken a non-numeric approach to my personal wine ratings. I've taken things back to elementary school and as such, I assign a letter grade to each wine. Most earn a B rating, either B+, B, or B- but some reach the A category, and a more common wine will receive a C rating. D's are reserved for those special patheic gems and F, well, that answers your question. An undrinkable wine receives this score. It may be rudimentary, but it works for me.
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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#7 Post by J.Vizuete » November 11th, 2017, 10:47 pm

I love this question - lots of different ways to go with it. I still use points if only for a relative mark for how much I enjoyed something against other wines in the past. My scale runs from 75-100. I suppose if I just hated a wine and it wasn’t flawed, it gets a 75 or no rating from me. Most of my notes on CT follow a tighter bell curve around 88-94. For me, 90 means good, drinkable, without technical flaws, but doesn’t imply anything special at all. Scores in the 90s are more or less how much I remember liking a wine. Obviously, that’s a moving target, and I’m starting to fill in more scores in the upper 90s as my experience (and budget) grow. A 100 is the best wine I’ve tasted. It’s got to be a wow experience, with interest, complexity, technically flawless, memory imprinting, captivating - something you’ll be thinking about tomorrow and next week, like a great meal at Alinea or something. 100s should be hard to come by and those characteristics must be all from the juice itself i.e. not driven by company or setting. I remember drinking a Copain Pinot at Per Se. it’s a 91-92 point wine when I’m at home, but with good food, friends and a special occasion, felt like a 96. It’s hard to divide the two but I keep that in mind . Some folks drink a lot of exceptional wine, and may taste (and rate) 100s all the time. For me, I suppose it’s maybe an annual experience. To me, WOTY means simply, the best tasting grape juice I’ve put in my mouth this year (rather than best value or a producer with a story etc)

Btw it’s interesting that the burgundy scale (or Pinot in general?) is shifted back a great deal. Somehow it’s a lot harder for a Pinot to come by a 100 (even/especially from devoted enthusiasts). Hell, if Meadows gives it an 89, that may be a 94-95 in some folks’ book. Whereas If Parker gives it a 99, you never know....
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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#8 Post by Ian Sutton » November 12th, 2017, 11:49 am

Very important for people to use a scale they are comfortable with, or no score at all as many of us do. No benefit at all in trying to apply a score when you don't like the scale or the concept of scoring.

I always found it interesting that the Italians never seemed to care for anything other than a simple scale, be it 0-3 glasses, 0-5 grapes or Veronelli who never much liked to concept at all. Only in recent years have we seen some using the 100 point scale (e.g. Luca Maroni, albeit I found the book of his I bought utterly useless, so maybe not the best example!).
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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#9 Post by Steven Brown » November 13th, 2017, 1:56 pm

For me 80 seems to be about as low as I expect to go. Looking at Cellartracker the lowest score I’ve given to a wine is 84 points (non-vintage Breaux Vineyards Serenity and to a Boen Pinot Noir). Anything under 87 is a wine that I would not buy again, one that has no real value to my palate.

I can foresee giving less than 80 points to a wine, but it wouldn’t be a “serious” wine that's regularly discussed in forums like this one. The gawd-awful Mondavi Private Selections Cabernet Sauvignon comes to mind, which a friend recently brought for dinner and I had to force down.

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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#10 Post by Jay $$ Winton » November 13th, 2017, 1:59 pm

I just can't say a wine is 88 or 89 points so I use letter grades.
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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#11 Post by Mattstolz » November 14th, 2017, 6:35 am

Steve Slatcher wrote: My scale is totally subjective. The number of stars indicates how much I enjoyed a wine at the time. No more, no less. Assume wines are not tasted blind unless I say otherwise.
* Avoid
** Just about acceptable, but I’d prefer to drink something else
*** Perfectly acceptable to good. Most wines I drink are at this level
**** Has that little something extra, e.g. intensity of flavour, complexity
***** Has a lot of something extra – a wow factor
****** Exceptionally good. Difficult to imagine how it could be improved
i personally like this scale. it acknowledges that its subjective and allows for the fact that tasting variation happens.
Ian Sutton wrote:DNPIM (do not put in mouth)

More difficult for me, as I don't like scoring wines, so don't.

The only scale I ever felt moderately comfortable with was the £ (but you could substitute $) scale. Literally how much you think the wine is worth to you. Inspired by our original tasting group, where we used to say that after writing a TN. Linked to price paid, it's a rather informative scale e.g. 17.5/12 is a wine I found really good value, and 12/20 is the reverse. The lowest score is also easy on this scale : 0
love the value/price ratio scale. thats a really helpful way to figure out the perceived value of a wine that gives somewhat of a sliding scale. i might start using this one more often.
J.Vizuete wrote:I love this question - lots of different ways to go with it. I still use points if only for a relative mark for how much I enjoyed something against other wines in the past. My scale runs from 75-100. I suppose if I just hated a wine and it wasn’t flawed, it gets a 75 or no rating from me. Most of my notes on CT follow a tighter bell curve around 88-94. For me, 90 means good, drinkable, without technical flaws, but doesn’t imply anything special at all. Scores in the 90s are more or less how much I remember liking a wine. Obviously, that’s a moving target, and I’m starting to fill in more scores in the upper 90s as my experience (and budget) grow. A 100 is the best wine I’ve tasted. It’s got to be a wow experience, with interest, complexity, technically flawless, memory imprinting, captivating - something you’ll be thinking about tomorrow and next week, like a great meal at Alinea or something. 100s should be hard to come by and those characteristics must be all from the juice itself i.e. not driven by company or setting. I remember drinking a Copain Pinot at Per Se. it’s a 91-92 point wine when I’m at home, but with good food, friends and a special occasion, felt like a 96. It’s hard to divide the two but I keep that in mind . Some folks drink a lot of exceptional wine, and may taste (and rate) 100s all the time. For me, I suppose it’s maybe an annual experience. To me, WOTY means simply, the best tasting grape juice I’ve put in my mouth this year (rather than best value or a producer with a story etc)

Btw it’s interesting that the burgundy scale (or Pinot in general?) is shifted back a great deal. Somehow it’s a lot harder for a Pinot to come by a 100 (even/especially from devoted enthusiasts). Hell, if Meadows gives it an 89, that may be a 94-95 in some folks’ book. Whereas If Parker gives it a 99, you never know....
I always wondered about this. compared to other rating apps I use, CT scores seem to be the hardest to get a feel for. a fantastic wine can be rated an 88+. I rarely ever see a wine rated over 92. wheras an app like Vivino seems pretty liberal with the 4+ scores.
Steven Brown wrote:For me 80 seems to be about as low as I expect to go. Looking at Cellartracker the lowest score I’ve given to a wine is 84 points (non-vintage Breaux Vineyards Serenity and to a Boen Pinot Noir). Anything under 87 is a wine that I would not buy again, one that has no real value to my palate.

I can foresee giving less than 80 points to a wine, but it wouldn’t be a “serious” wine that's regularly discussed in forums like this one. The gawd-awful Mondavi Private Selections Cabernet Sauvignon comes to mind, which a friend recently brought for dinner and I had to force down.
that was kind of the other thing I was wondering. do you think your lowest CT score recently was an 84 because you just select much better wines now, or did you just really hate the Boen? eg: if you were rating an Apothic red, would it still fall in that mid 80s range?

Personally, I think my rating system is based on what percentile of wine i think that bottle is. if i think it is a 99th percentile wine, then it gets a 99. If i think it is a 5th percentile, i wouldnt hesitate to rate that low. with that in mind, a 100 would be very hard to come by, as would a 1.

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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#12 Post by AndrewH » November 14th, 2017, 2:15 pm

Steve Slatcher wrote:
My scale is totally subjective. The number of stars indicates how much I enjoyed a wine at the time. No more, no less. Assume wines are not tasted blind unless I say otherwise.
* Avoid
** Just about acceptable, but I’d prefer to drink something else
*** Perfectly acceptable to good. Most wines I drink are at this level
**** Has that little something extra, e.g. intensity of flavour, complexity
***** Has a lot of something extra – a wow factor
****** Exceptionally good. Difficult to imagine how it could be improved
I don't think I have used 1* in the last few years, partly because I would often call wines to be avoided "faulty", and not score them. Most wines fall between 3* and 5*, with 2* and 6* being pulled out occasionally. Sometime I worry about personal grade inflation, but in my defence if I am going to bother writing a tasting note the wine usually has to be pretty decent anyway.

I think it is a misconception that the top score indicates perfection. if you imagine quality is infinitely variable but you have an integer scoring system, surely 100 means anything better than 99.5? In my case it is a lot more finger-in-the-air stuff, and the top scoring wines probably just hit the spot on a particular occasion. But IMO the mere fact that they are ABLE to do that is important in itself.
All very good points, and a sensible system.

That said, in the world of 100 point scales (or at least CellarTracker) I probably wouldn't go below an 80. At that point it's an NR wine - i.e., likely spoiled or so bad it doesn't deserve a rating (and really, I think I could make a more principled distinction between a 93 and a 94 than between a 75 and a 55.)
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Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#13 Post by RichardFlack » November 14th, 2017, 2:56 pm

At the risk of a bit of thread drift...
I really wonder how credible twenty five point systems are (75-100). I'd say it's tough enough to, for example, differentiate between 92 and 93 say at a single tasting. But how certain is it that 93 is better than a 92 when tasted a few months apart under probably different circumstances.

My personal favourite is the Johnson system (no, its not what you think). Extracted from former edition of his invauable Pocket Wine Guide
One Sniff: Minimum score, Emphatically, No Thanks.
One Sip: A step up
Two Sips: Faint interest - or disbelief
A Half Glass: Slight hesitation
One glass: Tolerance, even general approval
...
Two glasses: You quite like it, or there is nothing else to drink
Three glasses: More than accceptable
Four: : It tickles your fancy
One bottle: : More than satisfaction
Second bottle. : Is the real thumbs up
...
A full case. : You are not going to miss out on this one
...
And ultimately
The Whole Vineyard
(Which is a bit of an inside joke)

To answer the OP, I dont usually score but when. I do its 0 to 4 *, 0 for major fault, for minor but noticeable flaw and or seriously uninteresting, or truly awful style, theoretically drinkable but why bother.

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#14 Post by Mattstolz » November 15th, 2017, 11:36 am

AndrewH wrote:
Steve Slatcher wrote: I don't think I have used 1* in the last few years, partly because I would often call wines to be avoided "faulty", and not score them. Most wines fall between 3* and 5*, with 2* and 6* being pulled out occasionally. Sometime I worry about personal grade inflation, but in my defence if I am going to bother writing a tasting note the wine usually has to be pretty decent anyway.

I think it is a misconception that the top score indicates perfection. if you imagine quality is infinitely variable but you have an integer scoring system, surely 100 means anything better than 99.5? In my case it is a lot more finger-in-the-air stuff, and the top scoring wines probably just hit the spot on a particular occasion. But IMO the mere fact that they are ABLE to do that is important in itself.
All very good points, and a sensible system.

That said, in the world of 100 point scales (or at least CellarTracker) I probably wouldn't go below an 80. At that point it's an NR wine - i.e., likely spoiled or so bad it doesn't deserve a rating (and really, I think I could make a more principled distinction between a 93 and a 94 than between a 75 and a 55.)
so my question on a 75-100 point scale I guess is this: would 75 be a minimum score because even a pretty bad wine gets 75% credit for just not being vinegar? or is it just because when using a 100 point scale tradition says 0=less than 75? maybe the better way to phrase it is, where do those first 75 points in the scoring come from?
RichardFlack wrote:At the risk of a bit of thread drift...
I really wonder how credible twenty five point systems are (75-100). I'd say it's tough enough to, for example, differentiate between 92 and 93 say at a single tasting. But how certain is it that 93 is better than a 92 when tasted a few months apart under probably different circumstances.

My personal favourite is the Johnson system (no, its not what you think). Extracted from former edition of his invauable Pocket Wine Guide
One Sniff: Minimum score, Emphatically, No Thanks.
One Sip: A step up
Two Sips: Faint interest - or disbelief
A Half Glass: Slight hesitation
One glass: Tolerance, even general approval
...
Two glasses: You quite like it, or there is nothing else to drink
Three glasses: More than accceptable
Four: : It tickles your fancy
One bottle: : More than satisfaction
Second bottle. : Is the real thumbs up
...
A full case. : You are not going to miss out on this one
...
And ultimately
The Whole Vineyard
(Which is a bit of an inside joke)

To answer the OP, I dont usually score but when. I do its 0 to 4 *, 0 for major fault, for minor but noticeable flaw and or seriously uninteresting, or truly awful style, theoretically drinkable but why bother.
personally I love the "how much of this wine do I wanna drink?" scale. out of all of them ive seen, I think it is really the most informative for how you feel about it, and assumes that the score is a very personal and subjective thing, which a 100 point scale might not to (since so many people equate that to objectively derived grades on something like a multiple choice test)

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#15 Post by Steve Slatcher » November 19th, 2017, 2:24 pm

BTW the meaning of The Wine Advocate scores is published here https://www.robertparker.com/ratings
Not sure if it is still adhered to - I suspect there has been quite a bit of grade inflation since that was written

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#16 Post by Michael Martin » November 19th, 2017, 2:37 pm

59 is the lowest because I think that is the lowest Cellartracker let’s you go.
To get to 100? Only gave one wine that ever and it was because I couldn’t imagine it being any better.

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#17 Post by Joe Raymond » December 1st, 2017, 7:37 pm

I usually don’t go below 80 if it’s below that there is usually a flaw. I score 100 points maybe 1-2 wines a year. But I like to score wines so I have something to reference on CT when I have multiple bottles and want to know what to expect on the next bottles ability to score good or bad :)
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#18 Post by alan weinberg » December 3rd, 2017, 5:45 pm

I use the Zanotti binary system. 0 is not worth drinking and 1 is worth drinking.

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#19 Post by RichardFlack » December 4th, 2017, 2:21 pm

Or a ternary system:
0 - do not drink
1 - drink sparingly
2 - drink liberally

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#20 Post by RichardFlack » December 4th, 2017, 2:24 pm

I meant to add that my personal favourite description in the Johnson scale (that sounds slightly weird writing it like that) is the
Two sips = faint interest - or disbelief
You can almost picture the puzzled frown, the second sip and then the shrug or grimace.

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#21 Post by Bob Kot » June 18th, 2018, 12:04 pm

I use the Wine Advocate scoring approach which usually bottoms out in the low 80’s for me.

Here’s the breakdown. The number within the parenthesis is the maximum allowable points for each category.
The aggregate of these five (5) categories results in the total score.

• Color (5) - Virtually all wines receive 4 or 5 point unless defective.

• Bouquet (15)
• Extraordinary: 14-15
• Outstanding: 12-13
• Very Good: 10-11
• Average: 10-11
• Below Average: 6-7
• Poor: 1-2

• Taste (20)
• Extraordinary: 18-20
• Outstanding: 16-18
• Very Good: 13-15
• Average: 11-13
• Below Average:8-10
• Poor: 1-2

• Overall (10)
• Extraordinary: 9-10
• Outstanding: 8-9
• Very Good: 6-7
• Average: 5-6
• Below Average:4-5
• Poor: 1-2

• Scores + 50 = Total
• Extraordinary: 96-100
• Outstanding: 90-95
• Very Good: 80-89
• Average: 70-79
• Below Average: 60-69
• Poor: 50-59


Cheers!

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Re: Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#22 Post by M@tt G. » August 22nd, 2018, 8:48 am

Been actively buying since the 2012 vintage so about 5 years now, and compared to many here I still consider myself a noob. My “training wheels” scoring system is simple:

Excellent - one of the top wines I’ve ever tasted.
Very Good - a “wow” wine. Buy again / load up.
Good - very drinkable and consider buying again.
Fair - tolerable but don’t buy again
Poor - Dump / DNPIM

I mainly do this in CT to simplify buying when mailers come out.
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Re: Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#23 Post by Bryan Carr » August 24th, 2018, 9:51 am

We mostly (and infrequently) use numerical scores because that's what CT is coded for, mostly we just leave simple personal consumption notes when a wine is either above or below average for us, sometimes as simple as "HOLY f*ck SO GOOD", sometimes with a little more specificity ("over the hill, was probably never good", "tasty now but needs 1-3 years", etc.). We have similar tastes and so one note is usually sufficient, but on the off chance our assessments differ we'll note that as well, "Took a long time for the fruit to emerge, very herbaceous out the gate, L did not like".
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Re: Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#24 Post by Ian Sutton » August 24th, 2018, 3:28 pm

M@tt G. wrote:
August 22nd, 2018, 8:48 am
Been actively buying since the 2012 vintage so about 5 years now, and compared to many here I still consider myself a noob. My “training wheels” scoring system is simple:

Excellent - one of the top wines I’ve ever tasted.
Very Good - a “wow” wine. Buy again / load up.
Good - very drinkable and consider buying again.
Fair - tolerable but don’t buy again
Poor - Dump / DNPIM

I mainly do this in CT to simplify buying when mailers come out.
TBH I think that a far more practical (and realistic) scale to work with. Sometimes there is an awful pressure (often self-inflicted) to 'become better / more professional / more accurate (ugh!)'. Your scale is perfectly good for a lifetime.

Of course an associated tasting note will remind you why you might have rated the wine as you did.
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Re: Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#25 Post by alan weinberg » September 18th, 2018, 7:39 am

I use the Zanotti binary system. 0 is not worth drinking and 1 is.

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Re: Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#26 Post by Brian G r a f s t r o m » September 26th, 2018, 11:33 pm

Of all my Cellartracker tasting notes, only 36% have a numerical score entered. And I've grown increasingly fond of "gut impression score" over the past couple years, which tends to be a two or three point range.

That said, of the 36% of my notes that do have scores entered, the highest I've gone is 100 points (once --- it was an OMFG-bring-me-to-my-knees wine), and the lowest I've gone is 69 points (once). Most of my scores fall into the 84 - 93 ten point band. My score distribution is bell-shaped about 90 points.
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Re: Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#27 Post by Sh@n A » September 27th, 2018, 9:26 pm

I am in the gut system...

85 = I told you not to put in your mouth
86 = Don't put in your mouth
87 = Wish you didn't put in your mouth
88 = Wish I didn't put it into my mouth
89 = Would rather not put it into my mouth
90 = Wine is drinkable
91 = Wine is passable
92 = Wine is good
93 = Wine became enjoyable
94 = Wine became quite pleasurable
95 = Wow wine
96 = Stop what I am doing wow
Last edited by Sh@n A on September 28th, 2018, 3:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#28 Post by Ian Sutton » September 28th, 2018, 1:58 pm

Perhaps you could add
84 = I know how to perform the heimlich maneuver
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Re: Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#29 Post by M Kopecky » October 10th, 2018, 10:12 am

NR - Flawed

70’s - Is technically alcohol, but isn’t something I want a second glass of - Regardless of price.

80’s - Soundly made, enjoyable wines, with shallow depth.

90’s - Wines that I really wish I owned more of.

I frequently slum it, so I think I probably hand out more 70’s than most. Technically a passing grade, but you’re not going to show the report card to your parents.
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Re: Where does your personal rating system bottom out?

#30 Post by Len P » October 10th, 2018, 9:03 pm

50 - dry, bold, grapy
60 - dry, moderate, fruit-like
70 - off-dry, non-bold, fruity
80 - semi-sweet, fruity
90 - sweet, very fruity
100 - 20 year-old tawny port

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