Best wine websites as of April 2008

I have spent months searching the web for sites about wine. I think I now have a pretty comprehensive pool (of 180 sites). Webmasters need not apply as the contest includes all sites. I display only the 80 ‘best’ — ‘best’ is evaluated with public website metrics.

Herebelow is a story of the poll and an analysis of the results.

A comprehensive pool of candidates

Crowd of competitorsI have expanded the set of websites that I retrieve metrics for. Their number has grown from 90 to 180. This list cannot be the complete list of all the websites about wine but I propose that it is coming close.

Better data

The number of processed sites has grown as indicated above. Furthermore two metrics were interesting but brought their own set of problems.

The value of traffic used to be clearly out of the mark. I have improved the metric by averaging, aggregating and otherwise correcting the data for all sites. The traffic figure is now increased (uniformly for all sites) so as to show an amount that is credible: the real (private) traffic figures are no extremely far from those publicly displayed.

The other problem was the variability of the backlinks metric. I could not relate it to the site profiles: a few notorious sites showed few links. So this metric is out.

Ins and outs

Some sites are no longer showing. In general this is not because they are lacking in any way. It is only because of the growth of the competing pool.

Other sites are appearing for the first time. The highest ranked sites of these newly appeared sites (Natalie, Free the grapes, the Doctor, Classic, Wines and vines, Ken’s) are not new at all: they just were not known at the time of the previous website pool. This shows that this directory is an opportunity for everybody to discover websites (starting with myself).

How to participate

Websites are automatically included in the contest as soon as I learn of their existence. To be eligible to the next issue of the Cellarer wine directory, the below conditions must be met:

  1. The main topic should be wine.
  2. Producing estates and wine sellers are excluded. Some of them run wonderful websites but the type of information is different.

If you disagree with the directory criteria, please comment below or e-mail me.

You can follow the directory evolution by subscribing to the feed on websites blog RSS.

Once the above conditions are fulfilled the websites are also considered for addition to another tool: a search engine dedicated to wine and food.


There is a complementary contest: the American Wine Blog Awards. It has a focus on US blogs and uses some subjective judgment by peers. The purpose is entirely different to that of the Cellarer ranking, which automatically includes all sites and is limited by publically available data (which mostly is not directly influenced by peers). The American Wine Blog Awards were published in March.

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7 Responses to “Best wine websites as of April 2008”

  1. Robert says:

    Thanks for the update, I think that this list is, intuitively at least, a much better reflection of sites than before. I still don’t know how accurate the figures are (just because they are in the public domain does not make them correct, as you well know)

    Shame I wasn’t included (thanks for bothering to let me know) but there are various reasons for this which I hope to deal with soon so I might take my rightful place among the “elite” next time

    Keep up the good work.

  2. Robert,
    I am happy to say that your attitude is elegant! (No surprise here.)
    I hereby encourage my readers to subscribe to your excellent blog.

  3. Robert says:


    maybe I can be the top blog amongst “most polite” wine sites

  4. sandy says:

    A friend of mine just sent me the link to this website today. I, too, am sorry that our site is not included on the list. We are working very hard to improve our ranking and hopefully we soon will make it to be one of the best 80’s. We know we should be there but google does not know it yet. :( We have recently started a blog as well. Hope to see you all over there!

  5. Sandy,
    Thank you for your interest in this directory. Your site will not be included because it is out of the scope (and this in turn because it is primarily attached to a wine selling activity).

  6. sandy says:

    :( Thank you Estelle anyway. Keep up with your effort. I think it’s great. There are many sites that I haven’t visited before. I will definitely go down the list to see if I agree with the order. It will take me a while though…

  7. Jeremy says:

    I enjoyed your post and have bookmarked your site. ~ Jeremy