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Each year, Wine Spectator editors survey the wines we've reviewed over the past 12 months and select the most exciting for our Top 100.

In 2006, we reviewed nearly 13,500 wines from around the world in blind tastings. Nearly 3,000 of them earned outstanding ratings (90 points or higher on our 100-point scale). We then narrowed the list down based on four criteria: quality (represented by score); value (reflected by release price); availability (measured by case production or cases imported); and an X-factor we call excitement. But no equation determines the final selections: These choices reflect our editors' judgment and enthusiasm about the wines we tasted.

Thirteen countries are represented in our 2006 list, making this the most diverse group in the history of the Top 100, which debuted in 1988. The average score of the group is 93 points, while the average price is $49. We hope our selections stimulate discussion, and lead people to a deeper engagement with the world of wine.

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