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In the Dec. 31, 2009 - Jan. 15, 2010 Issue

Top 100

The grinding recession of 2009, combined with a weak dollar, made an impact on the world of wine. Clearly, wine lovers looked for value in 2009, and value is what our 2009 Top 100 delivers.

FREE Wine Charts:

Champagne: A free chart offers an alphabetical list of all Champagnes reviewed for the tasting report in this issue.

U.S. Sparkling wines: A free chart offers an alphabetical list of all U.S. sparkling wines reviewed for the tasting report in this issue.

Cover Story

The 2009 Top 100 - This year’s list reflects the major trends in wine over the past 12 months, with less expensive yet high quality wines from regions around the globe

Wine of the Year - Expressive flavors and stylish structure make the Columbia Crest Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley Reserve 2005 Wine Spectator’s Wine of the Year


    Tasting Reports

    Champagne’s Bubble Bursts - After decades of steadily increasing demand, sales of bubbly are slumping—yet quality remains high More than 300 wines were reviewed for this report. A free alphabetical list is available. members can access complete reviews for all the wines tasted using the online Wine Ratings search.

    Domestic Tranquility - As Americans enter a second holiday season on tight budgets, the focus is on the sparkling wines that deliver on excellence and price More than 75 wines were reviewed for this report. A free alphabetical list is available. members can access complete reviews for all the wines tasted using the online Wine Ratings search.



    Winter Reading Roundup - Our editors review eight books that will keep wine lovers entertained through the long winter months




    Savvy Shopper

    Savvy Shopper - German and U.S. Riesling, Loire reds and a wide range of values

    Dining Out



    Wine Auctions

    Cellars / Collections


    This Issue/Marvin R. Shanken



    Wine Talk

The Buying Guide

The Buying Guide for this issue is available here.

TOP 100 OF 2009 What makes a wine a member of this exclusive club? Find out as Wine Spectator's senior editors discuss this year's Top 10 wines in a video series. Plus, get a handy printable list of the complete Top 100.

HOLIDAY ENTERTAINING We'll help you throw a great party with crowd-pleasing wines and recipes that won't keep you in the kitchen all day long. Also, check out our great gift ideas.

VINTAGE REPORT CARD Get an early look at the expected quality in key regions of the Northern Hemisphere.

2009 NEW YORK WINE EXPERIENCE Don't miss our fun video blogs of the winemakers and guests who attended, our Grand Tasting photo gallery and complete coverage of all the editors' tastings.

NEW ON WINE SPECTATOR VIDEO Tune in each week for a new video. Don't miss these recent additions:

  • Cooking for wine: Cafe Boulud's executive chef and sommelier show you how to improve your pairings. Learn how to make Gavin Kaysen's recipes as he prepares a three-course meal in his home kitchen, starting with a delicious salad.

  • Napa Cabernet: Join vintner Tor Kenward as he describes the different characteristics of mountain fruit and valley fruit.

RECIPE SEARCH Access hundreds of wine-friendly dishes perfect for impressing your holiday guests, and search for recipes that pair well with your favorite wines.

FOOD-AND-WINE MATCHING To create even more great pairings, we've added new wine and food categories to our matching tool.

TRAVEL ADVICE Going away for the holidays? Find out which wineries, wine-country hotels and wine-friendly restaurants our editors recommend near your destination, plus learn what fellow readers think of them. Share your own ratings and reviews when you return!

GIFT IDEAS Give a membership to your wine-loving friends and family this holiday.

  • Know someone who needs help managing their wine collection? Our handy Personal Wine List tool lets you create shopping lists, track purchases, add personal tasting notes and find out if your collectible wines have gained in value.

  • Or know someone who's always on the go? Wine Spectator Mobile lets you check our 220,000 wine reviews or consult our vintage charts when you're at a restaurant or wineshop.


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