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User Survey 2019: Most trustworthy source of ratings

By , 26 February 2019



Trustworthiness of ratings
However controversial wine ratings are, the reason they exist is in order to inform consumer purchase decisions. Given a list of publications and competitions generating such ratings, you were asked to indicate which you considered trustworthy with no limit to how many you could select, the result as follows:

The frequency of wine consumption
Asked how often you drink wine at home, 46% said two or three times a week, 36% every day, 17% once a week and 1% less frequently.

Wine appreciation
The point is often made that most wine is a grape-based alcoholic beverage rather than a product of terroir and hence worthy of contemplation. The users of this site, however, are highly involved with the subject of wine as the following demonstrates:

Asked if you put ice in your wine on a hot day, 39.7% said never, 23.6% rarely, 21.9% occasionally and only 14.8% regularly.

Asked how often do you drink from “designer” wine glasses such as Riedel, 45% said on special occasions, 33% everyday and 22% never.

How soon wine is consumed after purchase
There is a much-repeated quote that “98 percent of consumers open a bottle of wine within 24 hours of purchase” but when we investigated this, the reality appears to be quite different with only seven percent of you admitting that you drink the wine within 24 hours of purchase.

Preferred wine closure
For all the frustration that TCA-tainted wine causes, it would seem natural cork isn’t going anywhere. Asked what your preferred closure is, 61% said natural cork, 24% screwcap and 8% Diam (technical cork). Of note, 6% said they had no preference.

Old vine Chenin Blanc

Old vine Chenin Blanc.

SA’s signature grape
South Africa has more plantings of Chenin Blanc than any other wine-producing nation in the world while Pinotage, a cross between Cinsault and Pinot Noir, first came into being here. Asked if the country had a signature grape, which of the two would it be, 54% voted for Chenin Blanc and 46% for Pinotage.

Favourite other alcoholic beverage
Beer and gin came out joint tops both getting 41% of the vote, ahead of whisky on 33%, “other” on 8% and vodka on 3% (multiple selections were allowed).

534 responses were received. For user demographics, click here.


14 comment(s)

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    Le Penseur | 4 March 2019

    The posted comments on the topic of MOST TRUSTWORTHY SOURCE OF RATINGS are perplexing and comical, yes at the same time.

    “The first ever winemag.co.za user poll was conducted via Surveymonkey.com from 28 January to 15 February. We had 534 responses with an 86% completion rate ….

    Here’s what we found out about you:
    65% have a degree;
    39% have a gross household income of over R60 000/month (16% preferred not to say);
    30% work in the wine industry and 70% do not;

    Finally, you seem to be highly involved in the subject of wine, with 68% of you saying that you visit the site once a week, more than once a week or even daily!”

    Also Kwispedoor says this blog probably only concerns itself with the “top” 2% of drinkers.

    No one posted any comment on the topics concerning: Best winery overall, Best emerging winery, Favourite wine routes, Favourite varieties, Stylistic preferences, Influence on purchase decisions, Quality relative to the price, Preferred wine closure SA’s signature grape etc.These were absolutely fine observations from the survey. The top 2% of wine fundi know what they are talking about. The 65% of Graduates also have an inkling what fine wine and appreciation denotes. Also that 30% that incidentally work in the wine industry as well.

    But my word, on the topic of MOST TRUSTWORTHY SOURCE OF RATINGS the persons with University Degrees, and people earning more than R 60,000.00 per month and the 30% who work in the wine industry, must absolutely have morphed into fools.

    Most comments are just nonsensical. Appalling results because you don’t agree with the results? On what basis can you claim to be the Arbiter regarding the outcome on the topic. Sounds more like a Trump-like comment, and I suppose one can tweet about it – False must be false, concocted… Why? I don’t agree, it doesn’t fit my paradigm.

    The NRA comment and FB friends comment doesn’t hold water either, it leaks like a watering can. The inference drawn is that because the pour souls who completed the survey, which was conducted through WINEMAG, must be biased.

    The 65% of Graduates and mind you the 30% working in the wine industry were so mentally deficient as to be incapable of ordinary reasoning when they answered this question, but only this question, the other questions regarding varieties, Favourite wine routes etc. were all rationally answered.

    An inference must be carefully distinguished from conjecture or speculation. There can be no inference unless there are objective facts from which to infer the other facts which it is sought to establish …. But if there are no positive proved facts from which the inference can be made, the method of inference fails and what is left is mere speculation or conjecture….

      jonathan snashall | 4 March 2019

      winemag please confirm if the invitation to complete the survey appeared elsewhere and whose / what database you used if you mailed the invite? thanks

        Christian Eedes | 4 March 2019

        Hi Jonathan, Invitation to participate in the survey disseminated via Drinksfeed.com, Wine.co.za and Wineland in addition to our own database and social media feeds.

    Gilles P | 2 March 2019

    Hahaha this is getting fun. Let’s see what Michael Oliver has to say now!!!!

    jonathan snashall | 28 February 2019

    agree Michael F, Michael O the survey was directed at Wine Mag’s audience, not the Platter audience, not the Wizard’s audience (although there is sure to be some crossover) not the…etc. Another analogy is asking your FB friends if you’re friends….

    Michael Fridjhon | 28 February 2019

    It’s the kind of result you would expect if only NRA members responded to a survey on gun control in the USA.

    Hennie Taljaard | 28 February 2019

    cockeyed for sure. Neal Martin is brilliant in his work. Platters lost the plot long time ago. with the rest I can agree.

    Michael Olivier | 27 February 2019

    How can the results be appalling Gilles P? These are honest answers to an honest survey. The answers are the answers of the people who participated. I would go with the results of a survey like this because of the integrity of the surveyors.

      Gilles P | 27 February 2019

      Just disapointed about % of trustworthiness of rating with Neal Martin but i guess he doesn’t review and rate much of SA wines, nor form part of the SA wine media scene which would explain such a low %. I have personnally more trustworthiness in foreign wine critics. I think they rate with more objectivity and have a much broader international spectrum of wine rating which make it potentially less biaised.

    Kevin R | 26 February 2019

    Shame on the 1% who drink wine less than once a week 😉

    Kwispedoor | 26 February 2019

    Yoh – Michelangelo awards more credible than Neal Martin? Okay then… Perhaps Neal Martin is just not as familiar to most SA wine drinkers?

    Regarding ice in wine. If you’re not a lazy pourer (meaning that you can manage to walk up to the ice bucket more frequently and pour smaller amounts of very cold wine that will heat up a little in your glass on a hot day and provide you with some nice development in the glass, without ever getting too warm before you finish) and you still feel the need to dilute your wine (dilution being the real issue), perhaps you don’t like wine quite as much as you think… As I brace myself from a wave of stone-throwing wine dilutors, I should probably say that I say this with a little bit of my tongue in my cheek – and of course you can drink it anyway you like! 🙂

    Concerning the only seven percent of people who took part in this study that drinks wine within 24 hours of purchase: this blog probably only concerns itself with the “top” 2% of drinkers, so it still makes sense that 98% of people drink their wine within 24 hours of purchase. But they mostly don’t read this blog or pay more than R50-odd for a bottle.

      Gilles P | 26 February 2019

      Well said about Neal Martin. Appaling results!!!!

      Cathy Marston | 4 March 2019

      Would delicately suggest that to my mind, the worse thing about adding ice to wine is that it kills flavours (of course, this is kind of the same as dilution but happens much quicker). I tend to demonstrate this flavour-killing with whisky, where a block of two of ice will render all aromatics stone dead whilst a drop of room temperature water has the effect of unlocking and expanding them greatly. Of course, if you’ve had to skimp on the quality of your wine, sometimes killing the flavours with ice is quite a good idea……..

        Kwispedoor | 4 March 2019

        Absolutely true, Cathy. Though some people might argue that, on a hot day, they are willing to sacrifice some aromatics in order to drink cooler wine. Of course cooler, undiluted wine is not a problem at all – provided you’re not unprepared or lazy (and to boot you can experience a wider aromatic spectrum as the wine warms up a bit in your glass) – but I think some people are just so in the habit of doing the ice thing that they have long given up on thinking sensibly about the issue. Rather than something authentic that affords you a peek into a particular part of nature’s wonders, wine then becomes more of a mere cold beverage. And once a person is used to diluted wine, the unadulterated version might seem a bit too concentrated…

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