The Corkscrewer Report only rates wines that we consider great. For all intents and purposes, that means 90 points or higher using the 100-point based wine rating system introduced by the Godfather of modern wine criticism, Robert Parker Jr., in the 1970s and now popularly used across the wine industry. However, we differentiate ourselves in one essential way: points awarded are always in relation to the price you have to pay for the wine.
So, an $18 wine that significantly overperforms in comparison to other wines in its price range will most likely receive a 90-92 point rating. (We haven’t found an under-$20 bottle of wine yet that gets a rating above 92, nor do we ever expect to find one.) On the other spectrum, any $150 bottle of Bordeaux or Barolo or Cabernet that gets talked about in The Corkscrewer Report will most likely receive 95 points or above. Why? Because if you’re spending $150 on any bottle of wine, it better be 95 points or higher, otherwise you’re wasting your hard-earned money and you have every right to be pissed. Or, you’re rich enough to not give a shit.
Does that mean a $12 wine we bought at Total Wine that gets 90 points is as good as a $75 Brunello we taste that scores 90 points? Nope. Chances are the Brunello is better than the Total Wine wine, because a Tuscan Brunello is one of the greatest types of wine in the world. But the $12 wine represents much greater quality in relation to the price and, thus, will be reviewed in The Corkscrewer Report; we won’t review that $75 Brunello, because we’re confident we can recommend to you a $75 Brunello that is great and gets 93 points or better. We don’t want to waste your time or money talking about a $75 Brunello that “only” gets 90 points. This is how we roll.
And we haven’t even talked about an $800 or $1,799 bottle of wine yet. And we won’t. We pretty much draw the line at $350 as the most we’ll ever pay for any bottle of wine—maybe $500 if it offers a truly one-of-a-kind experience. Beyond that amount, really, it’s just part of a game for the privileged few that has less to do with how great the wine actually tastes. See, we here at The Corkscrewer Report believe life’s too short to get caught up in the game of buying a wine bottle as a status symbol.
Wine is an expression of joy. Drink with passion and always with a sense of celebration. At any price range you can afford. Just make it great.