A critique of wine criticism

Doesn’t it go without saying that an independent wine critic should not take payment from producers?

There are certain subjects in independent wine criticism that you imagine would be beyond discussion: that anyone would be paid by a producer to write a review of their product is one. The fact that the newly formed Wine Writers of New Zealand requires its members to declare they do not receive money for their reviews suggests the practice is more widespread than you might think. As their manifesto states:

“If reviewers are to be widely trusted and respected, there must be full, transparent independence between them and those whose products they write about … We believe the practice of supplying wine reviews for direct payment removes that independence [and] is highly undesirable.”


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