I am here to share with you my three decades of experience as a journalist and a wine critic through the tasting notes, videos, blogs, and events of jamessuckling.com. I focus primarily on the wines of Italy and Bordeaux, but I have a strong interest in wines from all over the world, particularly California and Australia. I am also passionate about food, wine, cigars and other good things in life.
I worked for 29 years as an editor of the American wine magazine The Wine Spectator as well as its sister publication on cigars, Cigar Aficionado. I have probably tasted about 150,000 wines in my career. Read Wikipedia for my full, more detailed biography.
I am also the wine editor for Asia Tatler, with magazine editions in such key cites as Hong Kong, Macau, China, Taiwan, and Singapore, as well as Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, and Thailand. I do regular tastings in Florence, Los Angeles, Bordeaux, and Hong Kong. I also write for Simple News in Moscow.
One of the main focuses of this website is reporting on many of the best wines of the world through videos in vineyards and cellars with winemakers, vintners, and owners. Check out this free promotional video on what we do at jamessuckling.com. I also produced a documentary film on Cuban cigars called "Cigars: The Heart and Soul of Cuba." Click here to view the trailer.
I believe that today’s wine drinker deserves more than just written wine reviews and criticism. They need to see with their own eyes the place, the people, and the rating process. There’s so much more to learn about wine than just simple numbers and prose.
I taste thousands of wines each year as well. Those on location are generally not blind, but I bring out the paper bags for the larger, more organized ones.
I taste young wines for both the pleasure they give as well as their potential to improve with age. I was told early in my career that an outstanding quality wine must improve with age, and I have always believed this since. When rating older wines, or mature ones, I put more emphasis on their current drinking pleasure.
I rate wines using the 100-point scale. I have used this point system for close to 25 years. I still believe it is the simplest way to rate a wine, with its origins from grade school in the United States. A wine that I rate 90 points or more is outstanding (A), and an outstanding purchase. If I rate a wine 95 points or more (A+), it is a must buy. If I rate it 89 to 85, it's still worth buying. I wouldn't recommend spending your money on a wine rated lower.
Wines rated from barrel, or unfinished wines, are rated with two point ranges such as 90-91 or 92-93.
In general, jamessuckling.com focuses on outstanding quality wines, regardless of their price or origins. I don’t believe it is always necessary to publish notes of wines with scores of less than 90 points.
I hope you enjoy my website. Join me in my lifelong pursuit to find the best wines of the world, and enjoy the best the world has to offer. If you are a new visitor to my site, please try a free one-day pass and enjoy all the content. Let me know how you like your visit.
Photo by Alessandro Moggi.