Log In / Join Now

Ask Dr. Vinny

Do you have a question for Dr. Vinny? Ask it here...

Dear Dr. Vinny,

I have a question about WS ratings. It seems obvious that many wines improve with age. Well, can a wine's rating improve after several years as well, or is this factored into the rating when it is determined? In other words, does WS revisit its ratings and adjust them as the wines improve over the years? Thanks.

—Chase K., Washington, D.C.

Dear Chase,

Wine Spectator attempts to score the wine "at its best," when the tasters believe the wine will be at its peak. Years of blind tasting give the tasters the experience to make these calls.

However, the editors also regularly re-taste benchmark wines—it's part of any good taster's education. The WS tasters are wine geeks like anyone else, and they want to see how the wines are evolving. Sometimes reality turns out different from their original assessments, and you will find new notes that reflect the changes. A lot can happen from barrel to bottle to being cellared for 10 or 20 (or more) years.

—Dr. Vinny

Wine Basics

We break down the basics—how to taste, serve, store and more. Plus:
» Maps of major wine regions
» Grape variety characteristics

How-to Videos

Learn to taste wine like a pro, pull a cork with flair, get great wine service in a restaurant and more

Wine Spectator School: All courses are FREE for WineSpectator.com Members

Learn from the experts and get the most out of each sip. Take one of our online courses or take them all—from the ABCs of Tasting to in-depth seminars on Food Pairing, California Cabernet, Bordeaux, Tuscany, Sensory Evaluation and more.

Browse our course catalog
Check out the professional wine sales and service courses
Learn Wine Forum: Got questions? Get answers

WineRatings+ app: Download now for 340,000+ ratings.