Why are some of Wine Spectator’s reviews "web only"? What does that mean?

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Dear Dr. Vinny,

Why are some of Wine Spectator’s reviews "web only"? What does that mean?

—John., Martinsville, Va.

Dear John,

Quite simply, there’s only so much physical space in the print edition of Wine Spectator, and we review far more wines than we have room to put in print. We want to review as many wines as we possibly can, and we think that all of those reviews are worth publishing, even if there’s not room to put them in print.

In the limited space we have in the magazine, we try to showcase wines from a variety of regions and grapes, and focus on both the top-scoring wines, the best values, the most widely available and the most recent wines to hit retail shelves. Every single wine review that we print in the magazine also ends up in our online database at WineSpectator.com, so website members have access to every tasting note and score that we’ve ever published, whether it went into print or not.

And don’t mistake the “web only” tag as an indication that the wine didn’t generate enough excitement for us—there are plenty of terrific “web only” wine reviews, and they come from the same rigorous blind tastings as all of our printed wine reviews.

—Dr. Vinny

Ask Dr. Vinny blind-tasting

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