Movie & Wine Pairing

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Jackie Gleason ‘The Great One’ 2017
Lodi, California

The Hustler (1961)
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A full-bodied and robust red blend is the perfect choice for the complex performance that won Gleason his Oscar nomination. He stars as the iconic Minnesota Fats, rival pool player to the film’s hero (Paul Newman), and this ‘60s classic cemented Gleason’s reputation as a serious actor. Of course, Gleason’s career was defined by excellence in a variety of styles and genres – he’d later famously play in the Smokey and the Bandit series – but this is arguably his most powerful and robust work.

THE WINE

The comedic actor Jackie Gleason was one of the biggest stars of television’s golden era. Nicknamed ‘The Great One,’ he stole more than a few scenes on the big screen too. Boasting equally bold, charming character, this blockbuster California red pays tribute to Gleason and his legendary career. Hailing from premium Lodi and the superb 2017 vintage, it marries inky-dark Petite Sirah (67%) with silky, berry-packed Pinot Noir (33%). Four months’ aging in French oak barrels completes the recipe and adds subtle spice notes to the wine’s rich red and black berry flavors.

THE REGION

Lodi, Wine Enthusiast’s 2015 Region of the Year, has a grape-growing tradition dating to 1850. While the region’s famed for its old-vine Zinfandel (celebrated at the annual ZinFest on Lake Lodi), it’s increasingly known for other top-notch reds, like Petite Sirah and even Pinot Noir. Its warm summer climate is tempered by occasional morning fog, helping prolong the grapes’ ‘hang time’ on the vine for extra-concentrated flavors.

THE VINTAGE

VY_California_sunriseThe good news keeps on coming for fans of California wine. Following a string of fantastic years from 2012 to 2016, the Golden State had another great harvest in 2017. After years of drought, the vines were replenished by much-needed winter rains before enjoying a long, hot summer that ripened the fruit to perfection. Wine Enthusiast says it best: “California’s 2017 vintage is excellent.”

WITH FOOD

burg_openfacecloseupWith its full body and smooth berry flavors, this rich exclusive will make a ‘great’ aperitif for your red-wine-only guests. At meal time, it’ll pair well with hearty beef dishes. We suggest a gourmet burger with all the fixings or a savory roast with potatoes and carrots. You could also enjoy it alongside pasta dishes. Try eggplant Parmigiana for a tasty vegetarian option.

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