About and Scoring


Grape Observer is a fine wine journal focussing on the wines of Australia and France that has been published since 2009. It is written by Sean Mitchell Dip WSET. Sean is a Wine and Spirits Education Trust certified wine educator and examiner and a past recipient of international and Australian wine scholarships from Bibendum PLB and Wine Communicators of Australia.

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The following scale is used:

Outstanding (★★★★★) wines sit on top of the quality hierarchy. This may be due to the length on the finish, complexity of expression, intensity of fruit, resounding typicity and harmonious balance.

Very Good (★★★★) wines have special attributes. This may include long length, complexity, intensity of fruit, typicity or balance.

Good (★★★) wines are of interest and show typicity and balance.

Acceptable (★★) wines are sound, everyday and unremarkable wines that are fault free.

Basic () wines are modest wines in all respects.

Faulty wines are not normally reviewed. Faults encountered include cork taint, brettanomyces, excessive volatile acidity and unplanned oxidation.

Trade submissions

Trade submissions are accepted. Wine reviews will note that a submission has been provided. Viticultural and winemaking information is always welcome and appreciated. The section entitled “Fine Print” contains important terms and limitations. Please contact me at editor@grapeobserver.com if you have questions. For submissions, please use this address:

Sean Mitchell
Grape Observer
PO Box 3082
Dendy Vic 3186


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