Wine Score Revolution Gains Momentum

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Leaders of the Wine World Are Signing the Manifesto:

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Everyone is better off today without scores.

The world of wine is extremely complicated, and the scoring system became one way to help consumers choose a wine, but it’s time to move on. As Carlo Petrini, founder of the International Slow Food Movement says, “Everyone is better off today without scores.” Assigning a number to the taste of a wine should be (but unfortunately is not always) seen as one person’s opinion, and opinions are as varied as those giving them. An equally alarming thought is that winemakers are being pushed to make a more international style wine. They are changing their farming and winemaking techniques in order to achieve a higher score. We believe this is wrong.

Scorevolution is a movement created to bring together like-minded souls. You can visit the online petition at Signers agree scores should not be used to buy or sell wine. Our goal is to create transparency among buyers and sellers and to encourage people to find wines based on writings and by word of mouth. The power of scores is limiting the discovery of numerous grower wines, encouraging formula wines, and even influencing the creation of brand icons and inflated pricing scenarios.

Notable signers of the Scorevolution manifesto, among many, are Kermit Lynch of Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant; Randall Grahm of Bonny Doon Vineyard; Rajat Parr, Michael Mena’s lead sommelier; Jonathan Nossiter, director of Mondevino and author of Liquid Memory; and Cameron Winery of Oregon.

“Of course we love wine critics,” Christophe Hedges says. “We want people to read about wine and to ask the sommeliers and those behind the counters at retail shops for guidance. What we’re asking is that people go deeper than a score.” Kenan Hester of Houston Wine Merchant adds another key component: “We need more coordination between restaurants and retailers to get people tasting new wines. If people are regularly exposed to a broad selection of wines, they will gain confidence in their ability to judge a wine on its own merit, and less likely to be sucked into buying wine based on a number assigned to quantify the quality of a wine.”

“We must look at wine from a geographical context, and not a comparative context,” Hedges says. “Wine is about place and about preserving authenticity of original historical styles. It can’t be zipped up into a number any more than a painting by Cezanne can. Wine is about romance and individuality.”

If you’d like more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Boo Walker at boo(at)hedgesfamilyestate(dot)com/206.369.2378.


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