Parker: not awarding 100 points “irresponsible”

7th May, 2015 by Patrick Schmitt - This article is over multiple pages: 1 2

Wine critics who fail to give perfect scores are “dodging responsibility” according to the world’s most influential wine reviewer, Robert Parker.

Robert_Parker

Robert Parker believes that the critic who can’t award a perfect score is “dodging responsibility”

During an interview with the drinks business earlier this year, Parker – who developed the 100-point rating system – expressed his urge to award full marks to great wines, and his dismay at those who don’t.

“When, in your mind, the wine is the best example you have ever tasted of this particular wine, you have an obligation to give it a perfect score,” he told db.

On the other hand, he branded those who are incapable of awarding a perfect score “irresponsible”.

“I think the person who can’t give 100 is really dodging responsibility, because there’s no way they haven’t tasted a wine that is the best example they have tasted from this producer, the best example they could ever think of.”

He then stated, “I think it’s irresponsible not to give a perfect score if you think the wine is perfect.”

However, he admitted that awarding full marks does risk causing disappointment among wine lovers.

“I realise that when you give 100 points, whether you are a movie or theatre or restaurant critic, the expectations of the readers are almost impossible to fulfil – you are almost setting them up for disappointment, I understand that.

“But, at the same time I balance that out with the sense that if I really think this is best I’ve ever tasted of Pichon-Lalande for example, or Chevalier-Montrachet from somebody, then I’ve got to put that stake in the ground and be held accountable for it.”

Parker also admitted that he himself has been disappointed by his own perfect scoring wines.

“How often do I go back and re-taste a wine that I gave 100 points and repeat the score? Probably about 50% of the time, but most of the time – and there have been a few exceptions – I can understand why I did see it as perfect at that time.”

Finally, Parker said it was “the emotions of the moment” that made the difference between a very high scoring wine and one that’s worthy of the full 100 points.

“To me the difference is the emotions of the moment – the wine must evoke emotion – just like art or music or beauty, there should be an emotional response, and great wines should be emotional.”

Continuing he stressed, “It is that little extra dimension of emotion that comes with 100 points, and that’s the difference between a 97, 98, or 99 and 100.

As for his own confidence in awarding perfect scores, he told db that with time he had become more comfortable giving wines the full 100 points.

“Now, with more experience, I feel more confident doing it more frequently… once you’ve tasted across the field of play multiple times, year after year, you have a sort of encyclopaedic memory of what great wines are and how good this wine is.”

Parker’s comments were made during an interview with the critic in February this year, when he announced his decision to retire from tasting Bordeaux en primeur.

A full report on the conversation with Parker will appear in the June edition of the drinks business.

Meanwhile, Parker’s rating system can be viewed on the following page.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please note that comments are subject to our posting guidelines in accordance with the Defamation Act 2013. Posts containing swear words, discrimination, offensive language and libellous or defamatory comments will not be approved.

Subscribe to our newsletters

Job vacancies

PR Account Executive

Clementine Communications Ltd
Fulham, UK

PR Senior Account Manager

Clementine Communications Ltd
Fulham, London

Marketing Manager

Berkmann Wine Cellars
London, N7, UK

Brand Manager

Berkmann Wine Cellars
London, N7, UK

Sales Account Manager

Jascots Wine Merchants
London, UK

Marylebone Sales Manager

Philglas & Swiggot
Marylebone, London, UK

Area Sales Manager

Bon Coeur Fine Wines
North England, UK

Procurement Assistant – Wine

Adnams PLC
Southwold, UK

Account Manager Central London

Speciality Drinks Ltd
London, UK

Brand Ambassador

Speciality Drinks Ltd
London, UK

National Business Development Manager

Speciality Drinks Ltd
London, UK

Marketing Assistant

Hatch Mansfield
Ascot, Berkshire, UK

Marketing Manager

Bancroft Wines
London, UK

Regional Sales Manager – Scotland

Bancroft Wines
London, UK

The Global Sparkling Masters 2017

Deadline : 25th August 2017

The Global Malbec Masters 2017

Deadline : 25th August 2017

Global Chardonnay Masters 2017

Deadline : 1st September 2017

The Global Sauvignon Blanc Masters 2017

Deadline : 1st September 2017

Click to view more

The Global Rosé Masters 2017

With wines from the palest of pink to almost ruby red, bone dry to almost cloyingly sweet, reductively handled to barrel-aged, as well as gently spritzy to fully sparkling.

The Global Organic Masters 2017

The drinks business is thrilled to announce the launch of The Global Organic Masters

The Drinks Business Awards 2017

Now in its 15th year, the db awards have become the most authoritative, internationally respected badge of achievement in the alcoholic drinks industry.

The Asian Cabernet Sauvignon Masters 2017

the drinks business Hong Kong announces its first year of The Asian Cabernet Sauvignon Masters.

Click to view more