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taste scoring systems

There are a variety of scoring systems which can be used for rating wines. The two most well known are the 20-point University of California-Davis system devised by the famous Professor Amerine in 1959, and the 100 point system used by such organizations as The Wine Spectator, American Wine Competition, Wine & Spirits, and wine critics like Robert M. Parker, Jr.
A comparison of the two systems shows that they assign various numbers of points to specific qualities or characteristics found in wines. The scores are then totaled to give an over all rating.

In the UC Davis 20 point system, points are given for the following categories: Appearance (2), Color (2), Aroma & Bouquet (4), Volatile Acidity (2), Total Acidity (2), Sugar (1), Body (1), Flavor (1), Astringency (1), and General Quality (2).

In the UC Davis system scores have the following meanings:

17 – 20 Wines of outstanding characteristics, no defects
13 – 16 Standard wines with neither outstanding character or defect
9 – 12 Wines of commercial acceptability but with noticeable defect
5 – 8 Wines below commercial acceptability
1 – 4 Complete spoiled wines

Robert M. Parker, Jr.’s 100 point rating system provides the following information about wines:
100 – 90 Outstanding or Excellent wines
89 – 85 Very Good to Excellent wines
84 – 80 Very Good wines
79 – 75 Pleasant wines but lack complexity, character, or depth
74 – 70 Average wines
69 – 50 Poor, Unbalanced, Flawed, Dull, etc.

Wine & Spirits’ 100 point system is:
100 – 96 Superlative
95 – 90 Exceptional
89 – 80 Highly Recommended
79 – 70 Recommended

The Wine Spectator rating system is as follows:
100 – 95 Classic
94 – 90 Outstanding
89 – 80 Good to Very Good
79 – 70 Average
69 – 60 Below Average
59 – 50 Poor

The Medals awarded by the American Wine Competition have the following meanings:

Platinum 96 – 100 Superlative
Gold 90 – 96 Exceptional
Silver 80 – 89 Highly Recommended
Bronze 70 – 79 Recommended

A comparison of the rating systems shows the following equivalencies:

U.C. Davis Robert M. Parker, Jr. Wine Spectator Wine & Spirits American Wine Competition
17-20 90-100 95-100 96-100 Platinum
17-20 85-89 90-95 90-95 Gold
13-16 80-84 80-89 80-89 Silver
9-12 70-74 70-79 70-79 Bronze
5-8 na 60-69 na na
0-4 50-69 50-59 na na

Watch the WINES.com TV Video on “Wine Tasting Tips”:http://www.wines.com/info/wine-tasting-tips here.

© 2009 WINES.COM All rights reserved.
Database used with permission of Vintage Wine Lover’s Software.

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