All tastings reported in the Buying Guide are performed blind. Typically, products are tasted in peer-group flights of from 5-8 samples. Reviewers may know general information about a flight to provide context—vintage, variety or appellation—but never the producer or retail price of any given selection. When possible, products considered flawed or uncustomary are retasted.
*Products deemed unacceptable (receving a rating below 80 points) are not reviewed.
The Pinnacle of quality
A great achievement
Often good value; well recommended
Suitable for everyday consumption, often good value
Can be employed
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Discover New Regions for Malbec
The Mendoza Wine Region is by far the most important in all of Argentina as it is responsible for approximately 80% of the country’s total wine production. The Malbec varietal is almost synonymous with Mendoza as it accounts for the majority of the region’s plantings, but Cabernet Sauvignon, Torrontés and Chardonnay are also heavily produced. The combination of the desert-like conditions and high-altitude vineyards aid in producing wines with robust concentration with plenty of supporting acidity. The Malbecs from the region are known for producing wines with dense boysenberry, plum and blackberry flavors and often show layers of coffee and bitter chocolate due to oak aging. Be sure to look through our Mendoza Buying Guide to find the top cellar selections as well as the best buys from this region.
For truly intrepid vinous explorers, the Southwest France wine region offers treasures in the form of undiscovered appellations and little-known grapes. Madiran is home to the Tannat grape, while Jurançon is the home of Petit Manseng. And those are some of the most widely recognized names. Search our Southwest France wine guide’s hundreds of Southwest France wine reviews for more details on individual wines and for our comprehensive database of Southwest France wine ratings.
Spanning across the central and southern areas of Washington State lies the Columbia Valley Wine Region. It is the state’s largest AVA, covering nearly one-third of the state’s landmass. The wines of the region have been described as having the potential to combine the structure and finesse of the Old world wines with the approachable fruit and ripeness of the New World style. Our Columbia Valley Wine Ratings illustrate the improvement in quality of these wines over the last decade or so. The main white grape varietals grown in the region are Chardonnay and Riesling which are discernible by their vibrant fruit and crisp acidity. The red varietals are predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with a recent increase in Syrah particularly in the Columbia Valley sub region Walla Walla. It was the Merlot craze of the 1990s that sparked the…