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JohnL

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  1. Could you be more specific? What part of the paper are you referring to that contradicts the abstract quoted above? ← Unfortunately, one needs to access the many references in this study to fully understand its failings/short comings. RL Weil and especially Goldstein whose "tests" form the raison d'etre for the paper. The methodology used criteria based upon the assumption that only 90 point of higher wines represent recommendations by professional critics. This is simply false based upon the scoring system explanations/criteria of the critics. In fact, as I noted many of the wines Goldste
  2. I think you mean to say "regardless of the data espoused in the abstract." ← Ironically, I don't think the paper shows this at all. The fact is most every professional critic I know of reviews inexpensive wines and recommends them all the time. In fact, most of them are quite enthusiastic about pointing out good values and bargains worth trying. There is little evidence to support the notion that any critic is a "poor guide" especially if one accepts that informed opinion from any quarter is basically a suggestion to try/sample a particular wine. The real problem with this "abstract" is th
  3. I don't think much of anything in the article is "clear." Asimov does a good job in critiquing the whole mess. Their definition of "expert" is "a participant who has had SOME FORM OF WINE TRAINING..." In fact their universe of participants contained professionals (academics, lawyers, doctors etc), travel writers, food and wine bloggers etc. Many of these folks are highly likely to have considerable experience with wine--far more than novice or average wine drinkers/consumers. They concocted a method to determine each participants tasting skills involving Yellowtail which acts to further muddy
  4. I don't know any wine reviewers who do not review inexpensive wines regularly. In fact many of the wines that "won" in these tests have been favorably reviewed by the critics (especially the Wine Spectator). So there is ample evidence that one would do well (at least as well) following the recommendations of the Wine Spectator. also note the conclusion: "...individuals on average enjoy more expensive wines SLIGHTLY LESS. Among folks with a little wine knowledge "....we find evidence of a POSITIVE relationship between price and enjoyment."
  5. Are you attempting an analogy between price and scores as to their impact upon our reactions to wine? First the "test" can be "faulted" because it takes wine enjoyment/perceptions out of real life context and creates its own isolated context. Therefore as with all "focus" group findings marketers need to have the salt shaker at hand. Someone may take a rating into consideration when buying a wine. There is nothing wrong with utilizing any third party recommendation in making a purchase decision. In fact it is quite wise. My question is would you savor a wine more because anyone recommended it
  6. What people in Europe are willing to pay for a few "investment grade" wines in the secondary market has nothing to do with the market here in America. Our top wines already sell for high prices here. These are mostly limited production efforts that basically sell out on release in the domestic market. There has been a very limited and luke warm market for these wines whenever they do reach foreign shores. It is folly to think that British "investors" will start to snap up cases of Screaming Eagle because Margaux is too expensive. As for the market here, just who are the "good domestic" produce
  7. Do we care about how our top quality Michelin Tires were made? or our Italian shoes? (how many of us really appreciate the miracle of the Goodyear welt?). Isn't it enough for a wine maker that someone simply enjoys the wine? That you made a product that gives pleasure and that people are willing to buy?
  8. The article cited is not very definitive or revelatory. Really, I wonder what the point was/is. Investing in wine is not as prevalent as some seem to believe--there are a few operations mostly in the UK. Investing in wine involves paying fees--most numbers I have seen indicate wine appreciation is somewhere under 10%--I have seen very little, if any, indication of anyone actually making any money (save for the brokers etc). Liquidity (no pun) is a problem. Lifespan is a problem. Wine reaches a point where it is not drinkable and therefore of no value (save for some wines that have historical s
  9. I think you have made some very salient observations Max. The "controversies over the 100 point system" are becoming tiring and --no pun intended--(well ok I don't come up with these that often so)--pointless. Everyone can probably agree that there are flaws in every system. Some can argue that wines shouldn't be rated or evaluated at all. A more interesting debate IMOP-- If one wants to debate these things. The motivations behind much of the current debate (not here, I am refering to the wine press and the industry) is driven IMOP, by petty jealousy and internecine carping. The truth is, the
  10. "varietal but weak"??????????? Really! Here is the explanation for the numbers that appears on the cover of every Wine Advocate. Along with a note that scores should always be considered along with the tasting notes which explain the score a wine is given. Also a warning that scores and notes reflect a "snapshot" of a wine at that point in time etc. Also is a detailed discussion of how points are assessed concluding with: "Scores are important for the reader to gauge a professional critic's overall qualitative placement of a wine vis-a-vis its peer group. However, it is vital to consider the d
  11. Any good rating system has both objective and subjective componants. A set of criteria by which wine is evaluated. Rating systems are not about numbers or icons alone in a vacuum. Numbers or icons are a summation of a critic having tasted and evaluated a wine. Siskel and Ebert didn't just mutely offer a thumbs up or down. Each film was discussed and evaluated with the critics placing it in context of their criteria for assessing films. A viewer got a good idea of twhat the film was about and how its elements were executed by the writer, director anmd actors and came together (or didn't) to ju
  12. There are a lot of misconceptions/perceptions about the Puritans. There are also a lot of mis conceptions about our history and specifically the history of alcohol consumption and regulation in America. The fact is, we have a long history (starting with the Puritans) of alcohol consumption (and regulation)--remember the Whiskey rebellion of 1794? The role of religion from the Puritans to prohibition has IMOP been vastly overstated. In fact, it appears that just as it is the case with most of the rest of the alcohol consuming world, governments exercise control over alcoholic beverages both in
  13. At one time, much of Philadelphia's downtown area was a waste land. In fact, Philadelphia underwent a near miraculous transformation wherein Socuiety Hill seemed to emerge from the rubble almost over night. Detroit is just beginning to recover from decades of decline. Most people with any income lived in the suburbs and apart from some places like the London Chop House there was little in the way of fine dining in the downtown area. Most of the good restaurants where in the suburbs where the money was. It takes time but my most recent visits to Detroit indicate things are beginning to turn aro
  14. Good points! I think what is needed is perspective. "Terroir" is important. It is a fact that one area has "potential" to produce better wines than another area. The greatest wine maker in the world (whoever that would be) can take grapes grown in the Central Valley assuming a perfect vintage (weather etc) and not be able to make a wine as complex and interesting as he or she would if given grapes grown in, say, Howell Mountain. The Cote Chalonnais just can't seem to produce a pinot noir on a level with La Tache. So at a basic and very important level where grapes are grown is critical in how
  15. JohnL

    Wine assignment

    A key to finding wine that pairs with food is to identify the flavors that predominate in the dish. Sea scallops pair very nicely with some red wines as do sweetbreads (in any form--even if "mixed with the veggies"). Any vinegar can impart very assertive flavor to a dish. There are distinct flavor differences between lemon juice and vinegar, in fact, lemon juice is often recommended as a replacement for wine vinegar in salads--lemon juice is more wine friendly generally speaking. Lemon juice is also less assertive in any dish as it provides acid and a mild citrus flavor. Vinegars are also ac
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