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How Wines are Reviewed

The Midwest Wine Guy reviews wine like most of you - I open the bottle and pour! Sure, it's not always that easy and some wines are decanted (sometimes for many hours) before tasting. What I don't do is a blind tasting. Most blind tastings are set up so the reviewers taste the 'cream of the crop' first and then onto wines with lesser expectations.

There is no bias in my tastings. I'm not paid for my work and I accept no advertising from wineries or wine distributors.  I tell you if a wine is good, why I think it is good and provide a little bit of education along the way. In fact, in addition to the wine, I often comment on the label, because, lets face it - the label often gets the impulse buyers to pick a particular wine!

If wines samples are submitted for review, they are first stored in a climate controlled environment before they are tasted.  This gives the wine time to settle down after making a cross country trip.  Every bottle submitted is tasted and given the same consideration for press coverage.  Please keep in mind that there is no set schedule for tasting, so some bottles may not be tasted for several weeks.  For example, if a winery submits a Pinot Gris is November, it will probably be reviewed closer to spring when Pinot Gris is hitting its peak consumer time.  The wine can be a first growth French wine or a five dollar bottle of Chardonnay - it doesn't matter. If a wine is submitted it will be tasted.  This web site was created to showcase wines that I think people will enjoy. 

How do I score wines? Many of our wines have been given a number rating by me based on the Robert Parker wine scale system (when applicable). But more importantly is what is in the acutal tasting note. DON'T GET HUNG UP ON SCORES!  I sure don't! Too many people do and they miss out on literally thousands of wines that might have suited them better. I'll tell you if there is a wine I think you'll enjoy and why you might enjoy it.  You won't find a wine on this web site that I wouldn't recommend or drink myself!  A lot of times scores are given for the benefit of the winery at their request.  Some wineries insist that scores are not given.  Sure, high scores are nice but you should really pay attention to what is being said about the wine more than the score.  The more you know about wine the more you will enjoy it.

What considerations are made? Taste of course! But I also strongly consider price, availability, the presentation, label and whether or not the wine can hang around awhile. I'm not concentrating necessarily on the years and years of drinkability of wines, but whether or not you need to drink this right away or can put it in your wine cooler for awhile and save it for a special occasion!  If a wine is considered "cellar worthy", meaning you can store it properly for many years before drinking it, I'll let you know that.

How do I pick the wines?  Most of the wines reviewed on my web site are submitted by wineries or wine distributors.  If I've heard something (good or bad) about a particular wine and want to get the goods on it, I'll buy it and try it out.  Sometimes I just go to my wine cellar and pick a wine.

If a wine is corked or flawed, the review won't be posted. I will contact the winery to let them know. Corked bottles aren't that common, but they do happen. Sometimes a bottle gets jeopardized in shipping and that isn't the fault of the winery.

Thanks for visiting this site. I hope you find some good information here. Stop back often.

*For wineries or distributors considering sending samples, references are available on request.