Saturday, January 01, 2011

2010 2nd Half Summary: Intro

First some numbers:  
(to go directly to the listings click on 

Of 186 wines tasted in the 2nd half of this year eighteen were rosés, sparklings and desserts. Of the 168 reds and whites 125 were rated 83+, my defining level of ‘fringe enjoyable, and 33 were in the 90’s or ‘outstanding‘.   The rest, 43, were from ‘drinkable’ down to ‘uninteresting’.  None were ‘unpleasant’ to ‘unacceptable’ although, to avoid being discarded  (why drink uninteresting wines?) a few 70+ were blended with a satisfactory wine to improve them. For a summary of 153 wines tasted in the 1st half of this year click on 2010 Mid Year Summary .

Ratings are based on tastings for each wine in the month shown. Also the Values shown are based on the rationale and graph described in an earlier blog entry,
Pinning Down Value - Part 3 .   I’ve found the graph avoids an opinionated thumbsuck for a wine’s value. Come to think of it, perhaps I’ve put all of the opinions I find pertinent in graphical form. In that case a Value based on the graph may be opinionated but at least is consistent wine to wine.  Another point: it can be argued that a Rating honed down to ’1’ point is too precise. If that’s the case referral to ranges of points (repeated here from the side panel) could be useful:

  •     96-100 Extraordinary
  •     90 - 95 Outstanding
  •     86 - 89 Interesting to Excellent
  •     80 - 85 Drinkable to Enjoyable
  •     70 - 79 Uninteresting to Simple
  •     60 - 69 Unpleasant
  •     50 - 59 Unacceptable
Often said is that a number is not complete without tasting notes and tasting notes without a number is just colour, interesting though they may be. So the original notes can be found, the month of each tasting is listed beside the wine. To determine if inventory exists for any wine the link to the LCBO, #nnnnnn or CS, can be used.  Not all wines will be available at this point. The vintage and price shown in the addended blogs were at  time of purchase and may no longer be the same as those currently on the shelves. 

Going off topic to express a viewpoint:
How many times have you read the reviews for a list of wines to find only a few, often none, are available in your locale? Sometimes it’s a matter of timing - the publishing delay for a forum of wine tastings or the Top Wine Awards for a region. That’s understandable although frustrating. However a more significant factor is that in Canada it’s a crime to transport wines across Provincial borders.  Whether a cause or effect but still exacerbating, it's possible that as many as four out of five wines in Ontario aren’t sold in BC (see Price & Availability: BC & Ontario  ).

Most of the wines described in magazines such as Wine Access, Vines, Toronto Life and in daily newsprint: G&M, Van Sun, etc. that are available in one Province are not likely available in another - nothing to do with constrained supply.  What becomes questionable, not for their own Province but for a Canadian audience,  is the usefulness of wine reviews by, for instance, Christopher Waters, John Szabo, Anthony Gismondi, David Lawrason, Tony Aspler etc.  By opening cross border wine trade, for Canadian and foreign wines, these same articles would have a greater readership, a more diverse audience for their authors and a greater demand for their opinions. Without an added kilometre of travel or dollar of expense a Provincial critic could become a National success. Other than the solitary MP or consumer website (see 
FreeTheWine or FreeMyGrapes ) I’ve seen very few articles to reform this discriminatory practice at Provincial boundaries.  

Back to the 2nd Half: Intro
Click on the links below for the listings of my 2010 2nd Half:  wines. 



Cheers, Ww

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