How do we create the World’s Best Vineyards list?

We have an Academy comprising more than 500 leading wine experts, sommeliers and travel correspondents from across the globe. Each has been selected for their expert opinion of the international wine and tourism scene.

To ensure the Academy is representative, we divide the world into geographical regions. Each region has an acknowledged expert as its Academy Chair. Each Academy Chair is responsible for recruiting 36 wine and travel experts. They vote for 7 vineyards in preferential order.

There is no pre-determined checklist of criteria – each vote is a nomination for a vineyard experience that they deem to be the best in the world. The experience will take in all things connected with the visit – the tour, tasting, ambiance, wine, food, staff, view, value for money, reputation, accessibility. It’s everything that makes a vineyard visit a valuable and rewarding experience for visitors, and makes guests want to return or recommend a visit to their friends.

Voting Rules

  • With the exception of Academy Chairs, Academy members should remain anonymous with regard to being a part of the World’s Best Vineyard Voting Academy
  • Academy members must not discuss their voting selections with other members or Academy Chairs
  • Academy members must have visited the vineyards they vote for since 1 January 2016 – and are asked to confirm this when voting
  • Academy members must submit 7 nominations in order of preference
  • Academy members must vote for the vineyard experience, not the winemaker
  • Academy members can only vote for vineyards open to the public (not including any temporary closures due to Covid-19 restrictions)
  • Academy members are not permitted to vote for any vineyard they work for or have financial interest in – and are asked to confirm this fact when voting
  • Academy members cannot vote for a vineyard that is closed or will close within 3 months of the lists being published in June/July 2021
  • Academy members cannot vote for a vineyard based on a tasting experience that does not take place at the vineyard itself; for example, when a vineyard is exhibiting at an event
  • Academy members are selected one year at a time, with a minimum 25% rotation every year. Any voter that does not comply with the voting rules, or does not complete the voting process, is removed from the panel


If you would like to apply to become a voter please email the World’s Best Vineyards team at stating which region you would like to become a voter for. Further information will then be requested from you via email before confirming your application.  

Meet our 2021 Academy Chairs…