Every year since 1988, Wine Spectator has compiled a list of the most exciting wines we’ve reviewed over the past 12 months. These 100 wines reflect significant trends, recognize outstanding producers and spotlight successful regions and vintages around the world.
In 2012, our list was selected from more than 17,000 new releases our editors rated in our independent blind tastings. More than 5,500 of these wines earned outstanding or classic ratings (90 points or higher on Wine Spectator’s 100-point scale). We narrowed the list down based on four criteria: quality (represented by score); value (reflected by release price); availability (measured by cases made or imported); and what we call the ‘X-factor’ – the excitement generated by a rising-star producer, a benchmark wine or a significant milestone for a wine region. But no equation determines the final selections: These choices reflect our editors’ judgment and passion about the wines we tasted.
In this year’s list, 13 countries are represented. The average score remains consistently strong at 93 points, and the average price per bottle is $46, just $2 more than in 2011. We hope that you enjoy our 2012 list and that it leads you to more deeply explore the world of wine.
The Top 100
#53: Greywacke Sauvignon Blanc 2011; Marlborough, NZ – 92 pts
Kevin Judd put New Zealand on the map as Cloudy Bay’s winemaker for 25 years. In 2009, Judd established this, his own label, named after the gray sandstone found all over the country. Focusing on Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc, he makes two styles – one fermented with cultured yeast and one with indigenous yeast. This bottling, from cultured yeast, is Greywacke’s best value and most widely available wine.
The 100 Outstanding Values of 2012
Shoofly Shiraz South Australia 2010 – 90 pts
Read the full story at WineSpectator.com.