Movie & Wine Pairing

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Montevasco di Vicchiomaggio 2013
Toscana IGT, Italy

The Agony and the Ecstasy (1965)
Not currently scheduled. Check TCM Schedule for more information.

This classic red from Tuscany calls for a classic blend of film elements, with a story and palette as visually alluring as the ripe cherry aromas of the Sangiovese grape. In The Agony and the Ecstasy (1965), a lavishly produced and thoroughly enjoyable biopic, the turbulent relationship between Michelangelo and his patron, Pope Julius II, comes to life. Pour a glass and enjoy the story behind one of the art world’s greatest masterpieces.

THE WINE

In the heart of Chianti Classico, 14th-century Castello di Vicchiomaggio is the “splendid” (Decanter) castle that once hosted Leonardo da Vinci as a guest. Today, the resident master artist is owner John Matta, a four-time Italian Winemaker of the Year (International Wine & Spirit Competition 1997, 2002, 2005 and 2010) – and he’s crafted this exclusive Super Tuscan just for us.

THE STYLE

styleBack in the ’70s, a few innovative Italian winemakers wanted to experiment with international grapes forbidden in the production of Chianti. Strict wine laws required them to label these top-quality, painstakingly crafted creations vino da tavola. Frustrated, and wanting to differentiate their rich, expensive-to-make reds from this cheaper designation, they coined the term ‘Super Tuscan.’

THE WINE

A classic mix of cherry-rich Sangiovese (90 percent) and firm Cabernet (10 percent), it reveals why Decanter, leading Italian guide Gambero Rosso, and noted critics like Jancis Robinson and James Suckling are also big fans of John’s wines. And, given that Wine Spectator names Sangiovese the leading performer in Tuscany’s “very good to excellent” 2013 harvest, you’re in for a real treat here. True to his detail-driven approach, John gave the premium fruit a six-month slumber in traditional oak botti and small French barriques, for a just-right mix of appealing spice and oak aromas and flavors. Perfect for enjoying with a plate of meaty pasta.

WITH FOOD

foodWhen we asked John for his favorite pairing with this ‘Super’ red, he suggested arrosto di agnello (roasted leg of lamb with fresh herbs and garlic). If lamb isn’t your thing, we recommend the Tuscan classic bistecca alla fiorentina (steak, often a T-Bone, grilled with rosemary and brushed with white wine and lemon juice). Marinara over pasta will also work.

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