Wine critic James Suckling has released his annual list of the top 100 wines of the year. This annual selection showcases some of the best wines from around the world in terms of quality and value.
The impact of James Suckling’s list is widely felt throughout the industry. Winemakers take great pride in the recognition, and it often leads to greater demand, higher prices, and even more acclaim for the chosen wines.
The 2022 selection includes both red and white wines from Europe and North America, with several unique offerings from less-known wine regions. In his write-up for the selection, James Suckling explains, “This year’s list of Top 100 Wines of the World reflects the best wines we tasted in 2022, yet it also highlights outstanding regions, vintages and producers we found over the last 12 months.”
The list features many well-known names such as Moet & Chandon, Bordeaux First Growth producers, Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon producers, and Champagne houses. However, the selection also includes some hidden gems from lesser-known regions or producers in Europe and North America.
Who is James Suckling?
James Suckling is a renowned wine critic, writer and editor. He has contributed to publications such as Wine Spectator and Decanter Magazine, and currently serves as the Editor-in-Chief of JamesSuckling.com. Suckling has also authored several books on wine tasting and appreciation.
He is best known for his annual list of the world’s 100 best wines, which he publishes each year. His expertise and palate have made him one of the most respected names in the wine world.
Initially introduced to wine by his father, John Suckling, who collected the wine from the 1960s to 1990s, James eventually took over the collection, becoming immersed in all aspects of wine culture and developing a keen sense for tasting and appreciating wine.
Since then, James’ career has blossomed into one of the most respected figures in the world of wine. He travels the globe to visit vineyards, meet winemakers and taste the finest wines.
James’ passion for wine is evident in all his work. With an extensive knowledge of grape varieties, regions and wines he is able to provide a unique insight into the world of wine. His skillfully crafted articles, reviews and tasting notes have made him one of the most sought-after critics in the industry.
Why are wine critics important to the industry?
Wine critics are essential for providing the public with an honest and informed opinion about a wine. By tasting and assessing wines, they help guide consumers to make informed decisions when selecting wines to purchase. Wine critics also provide winemakers with feedback, which can be used to improve their products.
In addition to writing and reviewing, James is a passionate educator and lecturer. He has conducted countless seminars and lectures around the world, teaching people about the joys of wine appreciation. He also regularly speaks at wine events and festivals, sharing his knowledge with a wide audience.
Finally, James is an active participant in the wine industry. He serves as a panel judge for various international competitions, and he regularly contributes to industry publications. He is a tireless advocate for the enjoyment of wine, and he continues to spread his enthusiasm and passion for the beverage wherever he goes.
What impact do wine critics have on the industry?
By publishing an annual review of the best and worst wines on the market, wine critics provide valuable insight into what is currently available. Their reviews can influence consumer decision-making, as well as inform producers about which products are in high demand.
Additionally, many winemakers use critiques from professional critics to adjust their production methods or to try out new techniques. In this way, wine critics have the potential to help shape the industry by encouraging producers to create better-quality products.
The market also reacts to reviews given by wine critics. For example, if a critic gives a positive review of a lesser-known winemaker’s product, it can quickly become popular with consumers and create a wave of attention around the producer.
For example, Suckling awarded Beaulieu Vineyard Georges de Latour Private Reserve 2019 his wine of the year award, and it was almost immediately listed on the Liv-ex for the first time at £478 per 6×75.
|Beaulieu Vineyard, Georges de latour private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley||2019||100|
|Kunstler Riesling Rheingau Holle GG||2021||99|
|Albert mann Pinot Noir Alsace Grand H||2020||100|
|Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, Rouge Cru Classe, Pessac-Leognan||2019||99|
|Charles Smith (K Vintners, The Boy Grenache, Walla Walla Valley||2019||99|
|Soter, Mineral Springs Ranch Pinot Noir, Yamhill-Carlton||2018||99|
|Emmerich Knoll Riesling Wachau Ried Loibenberg Smaragd||2021||99|
|Rippon Pinot Noir Central Otago Tinker's Field||2019||99|
|Telmo Rodriguez, YJAR Rioja||2018||100|
|Domaine Charles Audoin, Marsannay, Les Favieres||2020||99|
Wine critics can also be instrumental in creating a sense of prestige and exclusivity around fine wines. It’s not uncommon for critics to award high marks to rare and exclusive bottles that are difficult to obtain. This has created a kind of market for sought-after labels, with some of the most expensive bottles in the world selling for tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Though it may be difficult to achieve a perfect score from well-known critics, their reviews can still have a major impact on how consumers perceive a winemaker’s product. By providing an honest assessment and highlighting certain aspects, such as complexity or balance, a critic’s review can be the deciding factor in whether someone chooses to try a bottle of wine.