How to Rate Wines

by Contributing Writer

Ratings for wine can fall anywhere between 50 and 100 points. Prominent American wine critic Robert Parker designed a rating system for wines that has become the standard. To rate wine, start by giving the wine 50 points, then add points depending on certain factors. You may want some experience in wine-tasting to have a baseline for comparing the wines you rate.

Step 1

Examine the color, and add up to five points. Wines can range from white to red and anywhere in between. Raise the glass to the light, and see if the color is vibrant or if it looks pale. You need to have some knowledge of different wine colors to know how the wine you are rating compares.

Step 2

Hold the wine glass to your nose, and add up to 10 points for the aroma. Wine aroma is also called its nose or bouquet. Swirl the wine in the glass to release the aroma. When smelling the wine, think of flavors that come to mind. Ask yourself if the notes complement each other and if the wine smells pleasant.

Step 3

Add up to 15 points for taste. The wine aroma you examined earlier should give you a clue on how the wine should taste. Assess whether the flavor meets your expectations. Consider the acidity and bitterness of the wine. Determine if it will pair well with food.

Step 4

Observe the finish, and add up to 10 points. Finish pertains to the aftertaste that you get after sipping the wine. Notice if the wine flavor stays on your palate or if it disappears as soon as you swallow the wine. If it stays, with a flavorful aftertaste, this means that the wine has a long palate and is of high quality.

Step 5

Take a couple more sips, and add up to 10 points for overall impression. Examine the overall package. You may ask yourself if the components of the wine complement each other or if there are some notes that fall flat. Take a moment to judge whether the wine you are rating is memorable enough that you will buy another bottle.

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