Hi, I'm new to wine drinking, so when buying wines I rely heavily upon the _Wine Spectator_ ratings, including the ones posted in stores. I bought a wine today that allegedly received 88 points from WS, and when I later searched the WS rating archive I found that the winemaker was not in the archive at all (including the full acccess section).
Does anyone have any suggestions as to what I ought to do? The wine was not expensive ($14 for a Pinot Noir), but as a grad student none of the wines I buy are expensive, and I try to get the most bang for my buck. Beyond the cost of the wine, I don't like the possibility that the store had posted an invented rating. Is that practice common? I usually carry print-outs from the WS archive, but they can be a bit cumbersome on a brief wine-buying trip.
By the way, the wine is labeled "Lucas and Lewellen 2000 Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir VR Hillside Vineyard."
Thanks for any feedback on this.