Creative Juices Wine Blog

New Project

Posted in Announcements, wine, Wine Reviews by CreativeJuicesWine on March 29, 2010

After my absurd mission to procure African Beer for my tasting event this past Saturday failed, I felt the need to tackle a new project. On Friday, one of our regular customers approached us with an idea to track down two bottles of each of the top 100 Wine Spectator wines of the year from 2009. This is a project I have considered tackling on my own, but now that it’s for someone else, I know it will get done.

The mission is simple (on paper). All we have to do is find two bottles of each wine on the top 100 list, and get them safely to our customer. He doesn’t care if the labels are pristine, because the only thing he really cares about is the juice inside the bottle. A question that pops up when discussing Wine Spectator ratings, or Parker ratings, or any other ratings for that matter is, “why do you rely on someone else to pick wines for you?” The answer is simple. Well, not really that simple, but nevertheless, here goes… The wine reviews are completed in a quiet room with no distractions, blind. The only details given are the varietal, appellation or region. Price and producer are not taken into account, so there is no bias imparted. For example, recently the 2007 Bordeaux vintage was tasted and rated by James Suckling. In the Pessac-Léognan category the Chateau Haut-Bailly Scored 91 points, the same score as Chateau Haut-Brion (one of the First Growth Chateaus from the 1855 Classification). The difference in these wines of course is in the price. The Chateau Haut-Bailly is $56 per bottle, whereas the Chateau Haut-Brion is $427 for a bottle. Oh, and the Chateau Haut-Bailly doesn’t come with a fancy classification that says that they make amazing wine. Scores are just a helpful guideline at best.

While points, and scores are important to a degree they are only in place to help potential buyers. They can be understood universally, and have proven to be an excellent selling tool. Ask anyone in Hong Kong (the leader in wine consumption in Asia) if you don’t believe in scores. In the 1990’s when the Asian market became a formidable market, and caused an inflationary effect, they were relying heavily on scores–specifically on those coming out of Bordeaux. My point is that whether or not you personally rely on scores, a ton of people do, and it has helped the wine industry grow into a $50billion a year powerhouse in the United States alone. So, why rely on other people’s scores and palates? The same reason you wear shorts and flip flops when the weatherman predicts that it will be 75 and sunny. You trust it to be true. The problem is that it ends up being 50 and rainy with 40 mile an hour winds when you’re wearing shorts and flip flops, and your palate disagrees with Robert Parker’s 96 point score on a Napa Cab. Then again, who knows? Those guys aren’t wrong all the time, are they?

That being said, I am excited for this project. I think it will be an interesting challenge for the Creative Juices team. I’ve begun researching, and have already found that for a couple out of the top 10 there will be a lot of digging involved. I will of course be in contact with our distributors to see which of these wines we can get, but for the rest I will be relying on a multitude of Google searches, phone calls, and road trips. I’d also like to be able to call your services to action. If you know of anyone (or if you are someone) in possession of some, or all of these spectacular wines–please let us know. We would like to take a couple off of your hands.

As this journey develops, we will be keeping you updated on our progress. Thank you for reading, and happy Monday!