The world’s bestselling guide to inexpensive wines
175 wines under $15 that beat $50+ bottles in blind
The price of this book is naturally under $15 but
is essentially “free” if it delivers on its promise. (Their part II wine list is a work in progress
for me.) * However, what is of much
interest is the detailed exploration of their well known key premise: Wine price is NOT directly correlated with quality i.e., the price of wine may not significantly correlate with pleasure: "When non-experts blind taste cheap and expensive wines they typically tend to prefer the cheaper ones." Part I consists of
a number of informative chapters summarizing and discussing behavioral
economics and neuroscience in wine tastings that is essential reading
for any serious
oenophile. As I agree with the majority of
the premises, I will not list them here but encourage you to read them if you are unaware of the latest academic studies.** Instead I offer one minor quibble and three suggestions for Wine Trials 2012:
- Given most readers don't have half a year to taste all these wines, a separate appendix listing of the
55 repeat winners from 2010, and especially the three time Wine Trial
selections would be welcome.
These perennial winners could be an ideal place to start as an
alternative to first drinking the 7 top Wine Trial 2011 Winners.
issue of inconsistency of wine judging - only 10% of judges were
"consistently consistent" ignores completely the importance of TIME i.e.,
WHEN the wine is tasted is a Factor (and sometimes NOT a small
- I would like to see the results of a study retasting some of these wines with food given that "A meal without wine is like a day without sunshine."
I would suggest combining blind tasting AND drinking some old world classic
food/wine combinations to see if the more expensive wine still did not rate "objectively"
the crowdsourcing model has great value, in general I prefer
expert opinions. A reliable expert I resonate with
(not necessarily agree with consistently) is a welcome
source of new information. In Wine Trials 2011, I would like to
have seen (in an appendix perhaps) a listing of more of the divergence
of opinion between the everyday drinkers and wine experts. My guess is
that especially with terroir-centered traditional wines, that
many expert opinions would be closer to my own personal preference.
Whether Wine Trials will eventually become a replacement
for Parker’s Wine Bargains: The World’s Greatest Wine
Values Under $25, I do not (yet) know. I do know it is a worthy
complement that deserves reading and merits tasting.
My closing comment to the editors: Both myself and my personal sommelier are available for tastings! :)
*Note one can also view a list of the “winners” on their website The Wine Trials for free.
** Interested readers are directed to the Journal of Wine Economics, the official journal of the AAWE.
you need a drink right away and you are waiting for your book order in
the mail, the overall winner of 2011 Wine of the Year was
Dr .L. Reisling (Loosen Brother, Germany) $12.
Moonshine? How the taste of wine is governed by the waxing and waning moon