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Corked award

If you choose your wine based on how many medals or awards it has on the label then you don't want to know about Robin Goldstein. As part of a research paper on the wine industry, Goldstein submitted Osteria L'intrepido for a wine award in Wine Spectator at a cost of $250 for an entry fee. And at such a price you'd expect a prize.Trouble was that Goldstein had invented the restaurant and mocked up a nice fake menu into the bill.

The 'award' was given based on a few Google searches and a browse of Chowhound, a UGC restaurant site. On one level it's an outting of a lazy revenue raiser for a magazine (the NYT estimates they make over US$600,000 from entry fees) and an exposition of some shoddy research. It also deals another blow to credibility at a time when reviewers are becoming an endangered species with the rise of UGC. It's earned a place in the Museum of Hoaxes but I'm hoping it creates a greater value for good research.


  1. Osteria L'Intrepido a fake? Man, I used to love that place!


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