November 28, 2018
Need a bottle of wine to bring to a holiday celebration, dinner or the office holiday wine pool? Don't just pick up something cheap, or familiar. This season, you can choose a couple bottles that are outstanding wines— that are also great values. These selections get over 90 points each when it comes to ratings, virtually guaranteeing they're going to be really enjoyable.
What to Know About Wine Ratings
There's a common system for rating wines. The 100-point scale is a score given to a wine by one or more wine critics. While these wine ratings are subjective and specific to the wine critic, most people look at them as a good benchmark of overall quality.
Wine Ratings grew in popularity in the 1980's after a well known critic named Robert Parker started doling out scores to help consumers make better decisions on their wine purchases.
Even today, Parker is still one of the most recognized wine critics, and his 100-point system is generally considered the standard scale.
You can expect to see the ratings expressed on labels as JS91 or RP90, where the initials represent the critic that gave the rating, while the number is their score.
How to interpret the numbers:
Co-op 90+ Point Wine Selections
With the educational portion of this article behind us, let's move on to some great 90+ point wines you can find at Co-op Wine Spirits Beer this season.
Speri Valpolicella Ripasso 2015
Rated 91 points by critic James Suckling
Made with organic grapes, this light yet earthy wine has fruity notes galore, including tastes of strawberry and blackberry, plus hints of leather, mushroom and nutmeg.
This wine is produced using the Ripasso technique. The word Ripasso means "going over again" and it references a traditional method of winemaking which re-ferments the wine.
The critic's opinion:
"A firm and solid red with blackberry and blueberry character. Hints of lemon peel. Medium to full body. Flavorful finish."
2015 Penya Cotes Catalanes Rouge
Rated 90 Points by critic Robert Parker
This wine has been called a "fruit bomb", and it's a blend of Grenache, Carignan and Syrah. The 2015 Penya Côtes Catalanes is rich and sweet with a full body and juicy notes of blackberries, cherries, plums, pepper, and spices, plus aromas of smoke, tobacco and leather. It's an outstanding value too.
The critic's opinion:
RP90 Robert Parker
"Penya’s 2015 Côtes Catalanes (52% Grenache, 36% Carignan and 12% Syrah) comes from tiny yields and was raised all in tank. It has a rich, sweet mid-palate, medium to full-bodied richness, no hard edges and terrific notes of blackberries, peppery/spicy herbs and leather. Drink this Old World fruit bomb over the coming couple of years."
Choose one of these high scoring wines next time you need a bottle that will impress. Find both at Co-op Wines Spirits Beer.
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