Do wine scores matter?
This seems to be a favorite topic among bloggers and wine consumers, so let me throw ‘what I believe’ into the ring. You have to love the internet!
What if I like a wine that has been rated poorly?
What if my friends find out?
OMG! Seriously! Relax – this is supposed to be fun. This is wine. Swirl it, smell it, taste it, and decide one very important thing . . . do you like it.
However, let’s talk about the way wines are evaluated and perceived, and how you can apply some of this to your own wine tasting experience. The only way to learn this is lots of practice. I know, terrible news.
Professional wine tasting is based on two things, objective and subjective evaluation of the liquid in your glass. An objective evaluation of wine will provide the taster with information regarding the more concrete qualities of wine (acidity, sweetness, and tannin). These qualities are roughly measurable and experienced in the same way by most people. These qualities are measurable when we remember that on a scale of low to high – medium is the norm.
Subjective evaluation of wine will provide information regarding the wine’s smell and taste. These qualities are interpreted by an individual’s memory. They are perceived differently by an individual based on their past experiences.
While it is important to note that professional wine critics taste hundreds of wines every year, it is also important to note that this is done so in a very sterile environment and independent of food and the company of good friends, which in tampawinewoman’s opinion, always enhance the wine drinking experience.
The end game is all about how you interpret the wine, whether you are comfortable with the wine’s value (the enjoyment of the wine versus the price paid for the glass or bottle), and ultimately whether you love or hate the wine.
The thing that wine critics have over us “regular” people, is that they taste more wine then we could imagine (and I can imagine a lot). Therefore, they are comfortable with the process of evaluating wine. Learning to taste wine like a professional is a skill, something that with practice you can learn. Lots of thoroughly enjoyable practice!