WINE magazine is going out with a bang. While the final September print edition threatens to become a sentimental sendoff – I was asked if I’d like to revise my final column but declined, preferring to go with the scoop of how Angolan generals are buying up the Douro, big time and if they’d only taught Portuguese at Paul Roos, Stellenbosch farm prices would be flying – the August edition includes a provocative booklet called WineIQ sponsored by Ultra Liqours. Confirming that Mark Norrish is the Rupert Murdoch of the Winelands and his colourful catalogues are the future of local wine reportage. Does that make Carrie Adams, Wendi Deng?
WineIQ claims to be “the thinking drinking guide to making a smart choice. As a system of purchase information, WineIQ will take the guesswork out of your shopping experience. WineIQ evaluates wines based on ratings from Wine magazine, Platter’s SA Wine Guide, price and value. It calculates the wines that are worth more than their selling price, e.g. if a R60 wine is valued at R110 then you ‘score’ 83% on the deal. The higher the percentage, the greater the bargain!”
The underlying statistical model is supplied by Dr David Priilaid and I do hope he’s moved beyond linear regression of score against price that was reported in the yellowing pages of WINE over seven years ago. For as any kugel will tell you, the cost of luxury is anything but linear. For a small increase in wine quality, expect to pay plentsch – an exponential relationship would be my guess at the underlying function. Of course equating wine scores and quality is a big ask, especially if you add Platter into the equation, which is just what Dave did.
Take Thelema for example. An associate assistant auxiliary affiliate acidulous editor of Platter found not a single wine worth nominating for five star glory last year when he eyeballed the labels and tastebudded the bottles, yet the panel at the Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show begged to differ when they assessed them blind and Gyles Webb came within a whisker of trousering the trophy for top producer. So how would WineIQ rate Thelema given such conflicting inputs? Buy next month’s magazine and see.
But the real issue for these IQ merchants is what selling price to use. Given the rise and rise of Johan Wegner (of Getwine fame) and other discounters, who pays retail anymore?
Ms Deng going to buy magazine chop-chop. Ha-ha, get it?
Just compared Thelema’s Platter & Wine mag ratings, seems the AAAA Platter taster that you mention loves Gyles Webb’s wines, in some cases significantly more than Wine panels, so why the constant squealing?
Thelema Chardonnay 2008: WINE 3.5 Platter 4.5
Sauvignon Blanc 2010: WINE 2.5 Platter 4
Cabernet Sauvignon 2008: Both 4.5
Merlot 2008: WINE 3 Platter 4
Merlot reserve 2008: WINE 4 Platter 4.5
Oh, and WINE IQ (BS IMHO) appears to feature only 1 wine from Thelema, the above 2008 Chardonnay.
sawineindex has been doing this for quite a while, and use local and international competition results. I think the only difference is SAWi does not sell wines, they forward the sales directly to cellars without commission.