The first American Wine Blog Awards were given in 2007. Created by Tom Wark and hosted on his blog Fermention, the awards quickly became the leading means of identifying excellence in wine blogging.
Wine blogs are nominated for awards by the general public and the top finalists for each awards category are selected by a panel of judges. Awards are given based on a combination of the judges’ opinions and a public vote.
In 2010, the Wine Blog Awards underwent major changes and administration was given to the folks at the Wine Bloggers Conference. Changes were made to the awards themselves and this website was established as the awards’ home.
The awards are presented live each year at the Wine Bloggers Conference and the year of the award represents the year they are given and received, not the preceding year. Please use Twitter hashtag #WineBlogAwards for discussion about the awards.
To make the public vote important in the overall process but to balance that process with a variety of judges with strong backgrounds and experience in the wine industry and social media.
- Submissions are open to the public so people can suggest their favorite blog.
- At the close of the nomination period, organizers go through the blogs and make sure there were no dead links and that the nominated blogs have the requisite qualification (regular posts, 1 year of history, etc.). We also ask judges to double check when they made their selections as well.
- Organizers then present the judges with the comprehensive lists in each category and ask that they select their top 5 favorites in each of their assigned categories. The intent here is to curate the long long list using the judges. The judges rank the blogs from 1 to 5 and submit them their list back to the organizers. There are 3-4 judges per category. The votes are tallied with 1 getting 10 “points”, 2 getting 8 “points”, 3 getting 7 “points”, etc. If there are any ties after the judges rank the blogs they would both be included for the public vote.
- The public would be presented with the “Finalists” and get to vote. Judges also vote on the finalists at this point (because the finalist list may not be the same list or order that they had for their submission).
- The public vote is tallied and each of the finalists is ranked from 1 to 5. The public vote is weighted 50% and the judges final vote is also 50%. So “Column 1″ is the judges ranking 1 – 5, Column 2 is public ranking of the same blogs 1-5. Same point system is used. If there is a tie, the public vote (i.e. whomever the public voted #1) determines the winner.