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How it is rated wein.plus

Tasting according to the strictest rules

Tasting and editorial director Marcus Hofschuster has an outstanding reputation as a conscientious and incorruptible wine critic. Together with trained sommelier Kim Schreiber, he tastes wines from all regions of Europe for wein.plus , and always according to identical quality and tasting standards.

At present, wein.plus 2,731 classified wineries are published with professional descriptions and ratings of 159,617 Wines are published. Producers and wines are updated and supplemented every working day.

The ratings from wein.plus are among the most reliable in the industry. They are comprehensible and repeatable.

Our rules:

  1. Each wine is exclusively tasted blind. During the evaluation, the taster never knows which wine from which producer is in the glass.
  2. All wines are tasted in a neutral tasting room in Erlangen to minimise distracting influences. In contrast to other wine guides, wein.plus completely excludes the evaluation of wines at trade fairs or at the producer's premises.
  3. To safeguard the ratings, regular counter-tastings take place in which wines are tasted that have already been tasted before.
  4. There are only so many tastings per day that plenty of time and quiet can be guaranteed for each individual wine. Very many wines are also tasted at least twice to take into account their development in the air.
  5. All tasters have many years of experience and taste full-time.

Why we award fewer points than other tasters

In recent years, we have observed an upward shift in point scores across the wine industry and tasting media. Wines that used to score 85 points would now tend to score 90 points or more.

We, on the other hand, continue to use the original, stricter grading, which allows for much better differentiation. That is why at wein.plus the recommendable wines already start at 80 WP.

The classification of the producers

One of the best producers in the world

Year after year, the wines from these wineries are among the absolute best of their kind and are virtually unrivalled at the top - regardless of vintage fluctuations. But even the simpler growths are almost without exception excellent. There are practically no weaknesses, and even mediocre wines hardly ever occur.

One of the best producers in the country

Producer of first-class wines, which are usually among the best of their kind, even in international comparison. Mediocre wines are very rare, real weaknesses hardly ever occur. Even in difficult years, first-class qualities are regularly produced here.

One of the best producers in the region

The wines maintain a consistently high level and are among the best in their respective categories in the region. There are hardly any weaknesses, but they can occur in problematic vintages. However, these must be compensated for in good years with particularly convincing ranges so that a winery can maintain its status. Basically, you can buy blind here.

Good producer

The qualities can fluctuate here, but as a rule, good to very good wines come from two-star producers for which it is well worth looking out.

Producer of simple wines

Ideally, the wines here are clean, drinkable and inexpensive, but rarely meet higher standards. Major weaknesses can occur.

Our drinking recommendations

Each wine rating contains a prognosis about the best drinking period under normal storage conditions. However, many wines remain in good shape even beyond this period. We just do not want to guarantee that they will continue to develop positively. Especially with ideal storage, however, the development potential can be significantly prolonged.

Our Favourite wines

In contrast to the point rating, which is supposed to represent the actual quality of a wine as neutrally and objectively as possible, the "Favourite wines" is a completely subjective award for the wines that taste best to us personally.

Favourite wines are the finest and most interesting wines for us in their style, category and price range. We would also buy them for ourselves at any time.

To the Favourite wines

Grading according to the 100-point system

wein.plus scores according to the internationally accepted 100-point system, which is borrowed from the American school grading system. We use the abbreviation WP = wein.plus-points in our scoring system.

What our scores mean

100 WP unique

Wines that can only be made differently, but not better.

95-99 WP great

World-class wines whose depth, complexity, character and expressiveness give an unforgettable, sensual experience.

90-94 WP excellent

First-class wines that are among the best of their kind. They are characterised by purity, harmony, depth and character.

85-89 WP very good

Remarkable wines with personality, expression and already some complexity and depth. They deserve the attention of every wine lover.

80-84 WP good

Clean, harmonious, at best typical wines.

75-79 WP passable

Neutral simple wine, without impairing faults.

70-74 WP sufficient

Very simple wines whose weaknesses outweigh their merits.

60-69 WP deficient

Wines with significant flaws that get in the way of any enjoyment.

50-59 WP Unsatisfactory

Wines with serious, disfiguring defects or gross wine faults.

Tasting team

Marcus Hofschuster

is tasting and editorial manager at wein.plus.

Already as a teenager he began to deal intensively with the subject of wine. In the following decades, he acquired profound knowledge of the world of wine through travel and countless tastings.

During his time as a wine merchant in Schwabach and Nuremberg, he came up with the idea of a comprehensive guide to the best German and international growths, which he put into practice in 1999: he gave up the wine trade and has since devoted himself exclusively to tastings of wein.plus, which he has made into a firm authority in European wine criticism in over 20 years.

With his strict evaluation system, his thorough and uncompromising tasting practice and his incorruptibility, Marcus Hofschuster sets standards for serious tasting in terms of actual wine quality.

Kim Schreiber

was born in Nuremberg and grew up in Eckental-Eschenau in Middle Franconia. As a trained hotel manager and sommelier, she worked in various Bavarian hotels and top restaurants, including Vue Maximilian, Tantris and Rilano No.6 in Munich. More

Voices of our members

Martin Donatsch

I am impressed by the precision of the tasting at wein.plus. I will gladly send in wines again and hope that I can persuade more Swiss winemakers to join wein.plus.

Martin Donatsch
Weingut Donatsch, Malans (Schweiz)