Movie & Wine Pairing

 

wine

Altos de la Guardia Blanco 2014
Rioja DOCa, Spain

The Player (1992)
Currently Not Scheduled

Like this wine's classic and modern elements, Robert Altman's Hollywood-set mystery owes a debt to the great films noir (even the opening tracking shot is a nod to Orson Welles' Touch of Evil). But The Player is at heart a comedy, made in the director's signature style and featuring a huge roster of modern stars. Enjoy this wine's refreshing panoply of flavors while Tim Robbins navigates the turbulent world of show business.

THE WINE

While the region's reds often steal the lime light, white Riojas can be real stars too. This impressive 2014, a vibrant blend of Viura and Malvasia from master winemaker Jean-Marc Sauboua, was released to 90-Point acclaim from Guía Peñín, Spain’s leading wine guide, and received a Commendation at the 2015 International Wine Challenge. While classic Rioja blanco can be heavily oaked and deliberately oxidized, Jean-Marc takes a modern approach. Altos de la Guardia is full of ripe, round and refreshing fruit. Look forward to aromatic elderflower, white peach, pear and more.

THE WINEMAKER

Jean-Marc trained at Bordeaux's legendary Château Haut-Brion, and has made acclaimed wines all over the world. He loves Rioja (his mother's homeland), and jumped at the chance to invest in the tiny Altos de la Guardia winery. Together with Hector Gómez (below right), formerly of Finca Villacreses in Ribera del Duero, he crafts limited-volume classics like this – a wine that balances classic Spanish personality with Jean-Marc's modern flair.

THE REGION

Vines were first planted in Rioja region during the Roman Empire. In the 1860s, Bordeaux winemakers arrived and shared new techniques like barrel aging. The mighty Rio Ebro divides the region and cools the hot, arid vineyards. This effect helps the fruit ripen perfectly, yielding juicy, flavorful wines. While most people associate Rioja with reds, the region's whites can be equally alluring.

WITH FOOD

This refreshing, fruity wine is delicious as an aperitif and also marries well with shellfish dishes and grilled fish. Traditional Spanish paella would be a natural partner, but if you're feeing adventurous, try it with aromatic, spicy fishor chicken-based dishes that also feature a dash of fruit – as you'd find in North African cuisine like a Moroccan tagine.

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