Larger than life: Profiling Parker

What’s your view of blind tasting? Is it a better way of assessing wines?

1961 Hermitage La ChapelleI’ve done blind tasting, but now most of the tasting I do is not done blind. Certainly people who make a big deal of it say that if you can’t judge what’s in the bottle disregarding rarity, pedigree, history, price – all those wonderful things – then you shouldn’t be doing it. I do blind follow-up tastings, just to correlate what I was tasting, and I’ve never really seen any discrepancies. Of course you are going to miss wines all the time, and yes I’ve been humiliated. But I don’t think blind tasting leads to better critiquing of the wines; I don’t think it leads to worse. But I question, though, if you are going to barrel taste, how are you going to blind taste? Most of the first growths or “Super Seconds” require you to be there, they are not going to send samples, so how are you going to handle that? It already sets up an arbitrary prejudicial system to those ones that will let you taste them blind.

And finally, if you were tasked with saving one bottle from your collection, what would it be?

Either it would be a 1961 Hermitage La Chapelle from Jaboulet or it would be a 1947 – my birth year – Château Lafleur from Pomerol. And the sad thing is that I can’t afford them now anyway.

One Response to “Larger than life: Profiling Parker”

  1. Cyrene says:

    A Hard-working man, modest, with a solid sense of humor, who love wines and food, with a true dignity and a sense of honesty that most journalists could only dream of. He did a lot for the world, getting dozens of millions to understand and aprreciate wine. Thank you Sir Robert, for what you have done and for always being true to your word. The wine world owes you a colossal statue to show its gratitude.

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