Movie & Wine Pairing


Cuvée du Vatican Réserve de l’Abbé 2016
Côtes-du-Rhône AOC, France

Dodsworth (1936)
THURSDAY, MAY 3 @ 09:30 PM (ET)

One of the most literate, sensitively acted, and beautifully directed movies of the 1930s, this William Wyler film drama is, like this French red, a classic blend of elements. Stars Walter Huston, Ruth Chatterton, and Mary Astor impressively tell the story of an automotive magnate and his turbulent personal life. It’s a richly textured film and worthy of a wine of such smooth, rich character.


The world’s leading wine critic (and Rhône fanatic) Robert Parker has been a devoted follower of Cuvée du Vatican since their 1970 vintage – in fact, theirs was the first case of Châteauneuf-du-Pape he ever bought. And Pope John XXIII loved the wines so much, he blessed Cuvée du Vatican in 1958, and the estate still sends a case to Rome each year. These days, the Diffonty family’s at the helm – “helping lead Châteauneuf-du-Pape to new levels of quality,” says Wine Spectator. Leader Jean-Marc “has been doing a fabulous job here for over a decade,” raves Parker. That’s why we’re really excited to bring you their lovely Côtes-du-Rhône.

The Réserve de l’Abbé is a classic Rhône blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvèdre. It sports a gold medal from Gilbert & Gaillard, whose judges called it “A distinctive Rhone, both in terms of aromas and restrained power. Boasts the kind of inviting fruitiness that makes it easily accessible.” Enjoy this rich Réserve’s heady, dark berry and subtle wild herb flavors with game or vegetarian dishes.


WM_JeanMarcDiffontyThe northern Rhône Valley is cool, steep-sloped, and known for peppery Syrah. As the Rhône River winds its way south, things get much warmer and Grenache thrives. The region’s signature vineyard feature: galets roulés. These giant, suntrapping stones radiate heat back to vines at night, helping grapes ripen more evenly, ideal for the development of complex aromas and flavors.


game_venisonbraisedTo locals, game is a common (and very tasty) pairing for reds like this. Venison stews, roasted wild duck, or boar sausages would all be fantastic. If game meats are hard to come by or don’t appeal, beef or meaty pastas are also top picks. Earthy vegetable casseroles with barley and garlic are a super choice for vegetarians and will be a tasty foil to the wine’s wild herb notes.

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